NAGPRA Issues in Hawaii, 2007 (Forbes Cave artifacts, Bishop Museum, ancient burials, etc.)


(c) Copyright 2007, Kenneth R. Conklin, Ph.D. All rights reserved

The Forbes cave controversy up until the NAGPRA Review Committee hearing in St. Paul, Minnesota, May 9-11, 2003 was originally described and documented at:
http://www.angelfire.com/hi2/hawaiiansovereignty/nagpraforbes.html

The conflict among Bishop Museum, Hui Malama, and several competing groups of claimants became so complex and contentious that the controversy was the primary focus of the semiannual national meeting of the NAGPRA Review Committee meeting in St. Paul, Minnesota May 9-11, 2003. A webpage was created to cover that meeting and followup events related to it. But the Forbes Cave controversy became increasingly complex and contentious, leading to public awareness of other related issues. By the end of 2004, the webpage focusing on the NAGPRA Review Committee meeting and its aftermath had become exceedingly large, at more than 250 pages with an index of 22 topics at the top. See:
http://www.angelfire.com/hi2/hawaiiansovereignty/nagpraforbesafterreview.html

That large webpage became so difficult to use that it was stopped on December 29, 2004; and a new webpage was created to collect news reports for NAGPRA issues in Hawai'i during year 2005. An index for 2005 appears at the beginning, and readers may then scroll down to find the detailed coverage of each topic. For coverage of NAGPRA issues in Hawai'i in 2005 (about 250 pages), see:
http://www.angelfire.com/hi2/hawaiiansovereignty/nagprahawaii2005.html

For year 2006 another new webpage was created, following the same general format. See:
http://www.angelfire.com/hi2/hawaiiansovereignty/nagprahawaii2006.html

The present webpage compiles information for 2007. When 2007 ends, another webpage picks up the coverage for 2008 at
http://www.angelfire.com/planet/big60/nagprahawaii2008.html

NOW BEGINS 2007


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LIST OF TOPICS FOR 2007: Full coverage of each topic follows the list; the list is in roughly chronological order, created as events unfold during 2007.

(1) Bishop Museum searches for a new President and CEO, amidst the turmoil over the Forbes Cave artifacts controversy. In 2006, for the first time ever, a majority of the museum's board members were ethnic Hawaiian, including the chairman and both vice-chairmen. Will belonging to the right race now be a specification (perhaps unstated but nevertheless very real) in the hiring of the next President, and perhaps also for future board members and employees? On August 3, 2007 the new president/CEO was announced; and he is neither a scientist nor an ethnic Hawaiian.

(2) FORBES CAVE ARTIFACTS: Proceedings to determine the fate of some 83 lots of valued cultural items known as the Kawaihae Caves collection begin anew on January 5, 2006 at the Bishop Museum after a six-year halt. All 83 items present and accounted for. On April 11 KGMB9 TV reported that Eddie Ayau is claiming that he is a direct descendant of a man who lived in the area of Forbes Cave and who might have placed the artifacts in the cave; therefore, Ayau would have the strongest claim to possess the artifacts. On July 6 KITV 6 PM TV newscast reported that newly released court documents show that when contractors entered the cave to retrieve the artifacts last year, they found the entrance had been booby-trapped with explosives which could have killed anyone entering. Unfortunately there is no written news report about this, but the entire report as shown on TV is available from the station here:
www.thehawaiichannel.com/video/13638263/index.html?taf=hon
In August 2007 La'akea Suganuma published a full-page advertisement in the OHA monthly newspaper to explain his position.

(3) January 23: Long delays in reburial of bones uncovered during construction causes protest by Hui Malama. HM demands moratorium on all construction until Department of Land and Natural Resources fully staffs numerous vacancies and resolves backlog of longstanding reburial problems. May 24: News report (commentary?) for national distribution through Associated Press describes the overall situation of numerous burials being uncovered during new construction.

(4) KANUPA CAVE ARTIFACTS -- EMERSON COLLECTION. REVIEW OF 2006 (See Nagpra Hawaii 2006 webpage for extensive details). Artifacts originally taken from Kanupa Cave almost a century ago had gone to Bishop Museum and to the Peabody Essex Museum in Salem, Mass. Under the NAGPRA law these items were repatriated to four Native Hawaiian groups, and had allegedly been reburied in Kanupa Cave in 2003. But in 2004 federal investigators responded to a report that a collector had discovered some of those items for sale in a shop in Kona. On March 17, 2006 it was reported that a Hawaii Island man has been arrested. On March 24, 2006 Daniel W. Taylor, 39, pled guilty to conspiring with co-defendant John Carta to take the artifacts from the Kanupa Cave in June 2004. Taylor is the first person ever to be convicted in Hawai'i under the 1990 NAGPRA law, according to the Honolulu Advertiser report of March 25. John Carta pled guilty on May 26, 2006 to conspiring and actually entering the cave and removing artifacts.
NEW EVENTS IN 2007. On February 2, 2007 it was reported that John Carta has been sentenced to one year in prison plus one year of supervised probation. Daniel Taylor is scheduled for sentencing on May 15. Eddie Ayau of Hui Malama writes commentary accusing state Attorney General of shirking his duties, and raising question whether Governor Lingle's neglect of this matter is linked to her neglect of Hawaiian burials. On March 6 it was reported that John Carta died of a heart attack. Eddie Ayau of Hui Malama, and news media, hinted that the spirit world was taking revenge. On June 4 Daniel Taylor received a federal sentence of 11 months in prison as a result of plea bargain and cooperation, but state Attorney General Bennett announced he will file state felony charges of theft. Taylor's attorney asked that Taylor not be sent to serve his sentence at any prison where there are large numbers of Native Hawaiians, for fear of being attacked.

(5) WARD CENTER (O'AHU) BONES INADVERTENTLY UNCOVERED DURING CONSTRUCTION
REVIEW FROM 2006:
11 sets of ancient Hawaiian burial remains were found in March 2006 during a major commercial and residential renovation planned for the Ward Centers complex in Kaka'ako. The O'ahu Island Burial Council heard from two families claiming to be "cultural descendants" of Hawaiians who formerly lived in that area, and who want the bones to stay exactly where they were found on the construction site. But landowner/developer General Growth Properties Inc. submitted a detailed burial plan to relocate the remains to a different part of the project site. The $100 million-plus expansion plan for the Ward Village Shops includes a Whole Foods Market, an upscale supermarket, a 17-story rental apartment building, assorted retail shops and a seven-story parking complex. On September 14, 2006 it was reported that the O'ahu Island Burial Council voted 6-4 that the bones can be moved; but more delays are expected.
NEWS FROM 2007: On March 29 it was reported that the State of Hawaii has approved the burial council proposal to rebury the bones a short distance from where they were found but away from current construction and future pedestrial traffic -- a decision for moving the bones that was opposed by most alleged descendants but endorsed by some. Bones will be stored in an air conditioned trailer for one or two years until reburial after construction is finished. A May 2 news report says 36 more sets of bones have been recently discovered in addition to the original 11. June 28 report says State Historic Preservation Division is asking the developer to redesign the project to allow remains to be preserved in place. A July 7 report says a total of 53 sets of bones have now been found, and there appears to be a large burial pit under a proposed condo tower's foundation which could contain hundreds more. On October 24 the number has risen to 63 sets of bones.

(6) COMPARING BAD DISPUTE RESOLUTION AGAINST GOOD DISPUTE RESOLUTION: ALI'I PARKWAY IN KONA VS. ALLURE WAIKIKI CONDO. LAHAINA BYPASS INQUIRY NOW UNDERWAY; AFRICAN BURIAL GROUND IN MANHATTAN
** Note: A new webpage was created on July 20, 2007 about the conflict between wishes to preserve ancient burials vs. wishes to construct new highways or buildings. See: "Hawaiian Bones -- Rites For the Dead vs. Rights Of the Living" at
http://www.angelfire.com/planet/big60/HawaiianBonesRitesRights.html

(7) INTERNATIONAL REPATRIATION NEWS
On September 7, 2007 it was reported that some Maori from New Zealand were repatriating from the Field Museum in Chicago the severed head of one Maori and some bones of 13 other Maori which had been traded by Maori to Euro-Americans during the 1800s. There are many such severed Maori heads in other museums and private collections. This raises some interesting questions. If Maori themselves freely sold such heads and bones perhaps 200 years ago, do we now judge that the choices made by those indigenous people were wrong (by today's standards)? Do today's Maori repudiate the choices of their ancestors? Would there be anything legally or morally wrong if the museum decided to keep the head and even to display it publicly (as was formerly done)?


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(1) Bishop Museum searches for a new President and CEO, amidst the turmoil over the Forbes Cave artifacts controversy. In 2006, for the first time ever, a majority of the museum's board members were ethnic Hawaiian, including the chairman and both vice-chairmen. Will belonging to the right race now be a specification (perhaps unstated but nevertheless very real) in the hiring of the next President, and perhaps also for future board members and employees? On August 3, 2007 the new president/CEO was announced; and he is neither a scientist nor an ethnic Hawaiian.

http://honoluluadvertiser.com/apps/pbcs.dll/article?AID=/20070102/NEWS01/701020347
Honolulu Advertiser, Tuesday, January 2, 2007

Bishop Museum goes headhunting

By Will Hoover

Bishop Museum board member Charman Akina knows the kind of candidate he wants to replace departing museum president and CEO William Brown. "What we're looking for is someone exactly like Bill Brown," said Akina, who heads a search committee charged with finding Brown's successor. "In just five years he's made the museum a warmer place, more open to the general public. I asked if they could clone him, but they told me no."

Brown, 58, who leaves Jan. 15 to head The Academy of Natural Sciences in Philadelphia, is credited with having rescued a financially shaky Bishop Museum from disaster in 2001 after years of turmoil, infighting over the facility's direction, staff upheavals and mistrust on all sides. He believes his legacy is the stability he brought to the institution.

A short list of his accomplishments includes completion of the $17 million Science Adventure Center, the largest number of annual visitors in the museum's history (last year's estimate of 425,000 people tops previous years by nearly 100,000), an endowment more than double what it was when he walked in the door, and an ambitious $20 million renovation of the museum's 116-year-old Hawaiian Hall, now under way.

"Those are big shoes to fill," said board member Mitch D'Olier. "And it's going to take us awhile to do it."

Brown has not dodged controversy, however. Some Hawaiians have strongly criticized his stewardship of burial objects that fall under the federal Native American Graves Protection and Repatriation Act.

Ironically, that's an area Brown is particularly proud of. "I'm glad to have stabilized the museum politically in its implementation of the laws that relate to the repatriation of artifacts," Brown said.

He's also proud of the fact that under his leadership, the number of the museum's Hawaiian directors has increased. Hawaiians now occupy more than half the 27 seats on the board, including the chairman and both vice chairs.

FAMILY BACK EAST

Brown is leaving Bishop Museum two years into his second four-year contract. His decision to go early is related to his wife, Mary McLeod, who works for the U.S. State Department, and his children, who live in Washington, D.C.

Left incomplete is Brown's dream of beginning a roughly $20 million project to renovate Bishop Hall for educational, archival, exhibition and library purposes.

But he is optimistic that the work will one day be done. "That historic building can't be left to fall down," he said. "It was there from the beginning. So, that's the big unfinished project."

His departure leaves the direction of the museum somewhat in doubt, considering it could take up to a year to find someone to take his place. In the interim, the task will go to Chief Financial Officer Michael Chinaka, who has no doubt about what playbook to follow.

"I'm going to pretty much keep the ship moving forward on what plans we had set up during Bill's time," said Chinaka. The museum's strategic plan was updated about a year ago, and he intends to hold it as his guide. "As long as we stick to that, I think we'll be fine," he said.

That should be good news to staff employees who may have worried about a mournful slide to the dark days of the past. "I think that since our situation at this time is stable and our morale is good, the future doesn't seem threatening," said DeSoto Brown — no relation — collections manager of the museum's archives, who once described the atmosphere at the museum prior to William Brown as "embattled." In only five years, that cloud has been lifted, he said. "I'd like to see us continue in the same manner that we have been for the last few years," De-Soto Brown said.

BURIAL SITE BATTLE

There are those who see it differently. Brown has his critics — most notably members of Hui Malama I Na Kupuna 'O Hawai'i Nei, an organization devoted to preserving Native Hawaiian burial sites.

Hui Malama became the focal point of a protracted legal battle over entitlement to 83 of the most sacred and cherished Hawaiian cultural objects that had been kept at the museum.

Having taken the items on loan from the museum in 2000, the group returned them to a Big Island cave from which it is believed the objects were taken and sold to the museum in 1905 by the Forbes Expedition — pitting Hui Malama against 13 other Hawaiian groups that also claimed the objects.

Last month, the items were retrieved from the cave and returned to the museum, ending one chapter in the saga and setting the stage for the next.

Brown, who became embroiled in the controversy by virtue of his position, will return to the fray on Friday, when he presides over a meeting at the museum that will begin a "process to determine if any one of those 14 claimants is clearly the most closely and culturally affiliated with the artifacts."

If such a determination can be made, Brown said, the museum is legally obligated to hand over the artifacts to that group. Otherwise, federal statutes provide for the museum to hold the objects until such time as all 14 claimants reach an agreement on the outcome of the objects, he said.

That, he adds, "could take a lifetime."

HAWAIIAN SPLIT

Edward Halealoha Ayau, executive director of Hui Malama, who helped draft the national native burial laws, contends that Brown has consistently worked to subvert those laws in order to prevent any further repatriations from the museum.

Ayau accuses Brown of being "anti-repatriation." And he is not impressed by the fact that more than half the museum's board is Native Hawaiian.

"The general Hawaiian community is not part of the museum's direction," said Ayau. "If you look at the directors of the Bishop Museum, you tend to have people who are very affluent members of the community. Very few of them are cultural practitioners."

Brown waves off Ayau's comments. "There are many Native Hawaiians who are deeply into their culture and should be respected for it," he said. "But the Native Hawaiians who are on the board are second fiddle to none. "There are always going to be issues. Somebody's going to say you're awful. I don't think that can ever be completely avoided."

MUSEUM MILESTONES

The Bishop Museum marked these accomplishments during the tenure of president and CEO William Brown.

• Opened $17-million Science and Adventure Center, all but $500,000 of which was paid before the first visitor arrived.

• Launched $20-million restoration of museum's iconic, 116-year-old Hawaiian Hall.

• Started ambitious global project to trace Hawai'i's roots back thousands of years, possibly to Chinese seafarers.

• Planned for creation of high school for 120 students interested in learning about culture and the environment.

• In 2003, completed renovation of the Watumull Planetarium, which has performances, tours and observatory programs.

• In 2004, more than 110,000 people attended the museum's off-site exhibits, such as the Hilton Hawaiian Village and the Department of Hawaiian Homelands.

• With more than 25,000 visitors annually, the museum's Hawai'i Maritime Center at Honolulu Harbor became debt-free in April 2005.

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http://honoluluadvertiser.com/apps/pbcs.dll/article?AID=/20070804/NEWS03/708040339/1007/NEWS03
Honolulu Advertiser, Saturday, August 4, 2007

Honolulu's Bishop Museum chooses new president

By Kim Fassler

Bishop Museum's new president faces significant challenges, but people at the museum and in the community say he is up to the task.

Tim Johns, named to the position yesterday, said his first step when he begins work Oct. 1 will be to "listen a lot." "It's going to be a lot of listening before we formulate a game plan," he said.

Tasks include overseeing the completion of a $21 million renovation to Hawaiian Hall and looking for ways to ensure the museum's continued financial stability.

"It's an extraordinary institution which is often taken for granted," said Allen Allison, vice president for science at the museum. "It really needs the kind of public interest and attention to really move it to its full potential. This is the guy who can do that."

Johns is currently chief operating officer for the Estate of Samuel Mills Damon, a job he has held since 2000. He was chairman of the state Department of Land and Natural Resources from January 1999 to December 2000, and has also been director of land protection with the Nature Conservancy of Hawaii.

With the Damon Estate, he presided over the donation of more than 600 Hawaiian and Pacific artifacts to Bishop Museum in January.

Johns will succeed Michael Chinaka, who has been the museum's interim president since January, following the departure of director William Brown. Brown is credited with steering the museum out of financial trouble in 2001 and setting the facility on a more stable course following years of internal turmoil.

The museum is in the midst of a $21 million renovation of its century-old centerpiece, Hawaiian Hall. The first phase of the project is slated for completion in May 2009. About $13.7 million has been raised so far for the renovation.

One of Johns' other tasks will be to oversee the completion of a visitor center being constructed at the Amy B.H. Greenwell Ethnobotanical Garden in Captain Cook on the Big Island.

"The forest isn't burning down around us," said Chinaka, who will return to his position as senior vice president, treasurer and chief financial officer for Bishop Museum. "But we're not out of the woods yet and we'll continue to look for funding opportunities."

Allison, who served on the search committee, also said Johns "really understands management and he really understands Hawai'i. "He seems to be able to converse easily with a wide variety of different groups of people."

Brown was criticized by some Hawaiian groups for his handling of burial objects covered by the federal Native American Graves and Repatriation Act.

The group Hui Malama I Na Kupuna 'O Hawai'i Nei, whose goal is the protection of Native Hawaiian burial sites, in 2000 borrowed 83 cultural objects from the museum and placed them in a Big Island cave from where it is believed they were taken by the explorer David Forbes in 1905. The incident set off a number of claims of rightful ownership of the items. In his new position, Johns will oversee a process that may take years to determine which groups are the most appropriate claimants.

Edward Halealoha Ayau, executive director of Hui Malama, said he hoped Johns would "retain fairness and objectivity" in deciding the repatriation cases. Ayau served with Johns on the Northwest Hawaiian Islands Coral Reef Ecosystem Reserve advisory council, and said, "I found him to be a very even-handed and very fair person."

Laakea Suganuma, president of Royal Hawaiian Academy of Traditional Arts, one of groups recognized as having an interest in the cultural items, said of Johns, "I think he's a good fit for the direction the museum's moving in. I'm sure they made a wise decision."

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http://starbulletin.com/2007/08/04/news/story02.html
Honolulu Star-Bulletin, Saturday, August 4, 2007

By Brittany P. Yap

A Damon Estate chief executive officer was named the new president, director and chief executive officer of Bishop Museum yesterday, beating out nearly 50 other applicants from around the world.

Timothy Johns, 51, will take over the position Oct. 1, succeeding Michael Chinaka, who has been serving as interim president since William Brown resigned in January.

"This gives me the opportunity to lead a really important institution during a critical time in Hawaii," Johns said.

The museum's board of directors chose Johns after a seven-month executive search by the international search organization Morris & Berger. After several interviews, Johns became a finalist, and met with the staff and management of Bishop Museum a couple of weeks ago.

Before working for the Damon Estate, Johns was director of the state Department of Land and Natural Resources. He has also served as vice president for Amfac Property Development Corp. and director of land protection with the Nature Conservancy of Hawaii. He received his bachelor's degree in history and business economics, a master's degree in economics and a law degree from the University of Southern California.

Johns, who comes from a military family and moved across the country as a youngster, has lived in Hawaii for 25 years.

"I'm not a scientist and I'm not a native Hawaiian, and I don't pretend to be well known in the native Hawaiian community," Johns said.

However, through his work at DLNR, Johns has experience with protecting sites that are biologically and culturally significant. He said he also understands the educational aspects of Bishop Museum, being a part-time teacher himself for 10 years. He stresses the word "sensitivity" when dealing with cultural issues.

Johns knows he is stepping into controversial issues, such as the Forbes Cave case, which has pitted native Hawaiian groups against each other over possession of artifacts. "My only hope is to deal with it in a less destructive way," he said. "I know that there's differing points of view. ... I want to just treat everyone with respect."

The museum has never had a native Hawaiian president and chief executive officer, and that was one thing that Edward Halealoha Ayau, executive director of Hui Malama I Na Kupuna o Hawaii Nei, was hoping for. Despite Johns not being Hawaiian, Ayau said he is optimistic about the new leadership.

"(Hui Malama) had the opportunity to work with Tim in the past, and he seems like a very fair and even-handed person," Ayau said. "We feel that was missing in the previous leadership."

One thing Johns wants to do is bridge the gaps between Bishop Museum and the business and political communities. His immediate goals upon taking on the position are to complete commitments that were made prior to his hiring and to make sure the museum remains financially stable.

"We are delighted the board of directors has chosen a candidate with a deep commitment to the preservation and perpetuation of the Hawaiian culture and respectful sensitivity to cultural issues," said Betty Lou Kam, vice president of cultural resources for the museum.

Johns takes over as Bishop Museum undertakes a $21 million renovation of its iconic Hawaiian Hall complex. Some of the renovations include making the complex compliant with the Americans with Disabilities Act, modernizing its climate control and enriching the exhibits by making them interactive.

For Johns the ironic thing about it all is that Samuel Mills Damon was one of the founding members of Bishop Museum and Charles Reed Bishop's good friend and business partner. According to Johns, when Bishop moved back to the mainland, he left Damon in charge of completing the Hawaiian Hall building. "Eighty years later and they're still connected," he said.

Timothy Johns
Age: 51
Residence: Waialae Iki
Job: Chief executive officer, director and president of Bishop Museum
Experience: CEO of Damon Estate, chairman of the state Board of Land and Natural Resources, vice president for Amfac Property Development Corp. and director of land protection with the Nature Conservancy of Hawaii, and trustee of Parker Ranch Foundation Trust. He also serves as a board of director for several companies.
Education: Bachelor of science in history and business economics from the University of California, Santa Barbara. Master's of arts in economics and law degree from the University of Southern California
Personal: Married to Robin Johns, with two children.


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(2) FORBES CAVE ARTIFACTS: Proceedings to determine the fate of some 83 lots of valued cultural items known as the Kawaihae Caves collection begin anew on January 5, 2006 at the Bishop Museum after a six-year halt. All 83 items present and accounted for. On April 11 KGMB9 TV reported that Eddie Ayau is claiming that he is a direct descendant of a man who lived in the area of Forbes Cave and who might have placed the artifacts in the cave; therefore, Ayau would have the strongest claim to possess the artifacts. On July 6 KITV 6 PM TV newscast reported that newly released court documents show that when contractors entered the cave to retrieve the artifacts last year, they found the entrance had been booby-trapped with explosives which could have killed anyone entering. Unfortunately there is no written news report about this, but the entire report as shown on TV is available from the station here:
www.thehawaiichannel.com/video/13638263/index.html?taf=hon
In August 2007 La'akea Suganuma published a full-page advertisement in the OHA monthly newspaper to explain his position.

http://www.honoluluadvertiser.com/apps/pbcs.dll/article?AID=/20070105/NEWS23/701050355/1173/NEWS
Honolulu Advertiser, Friday, January 5, 2007

Repatriation hearings resume over cultural artifacts

Advertiser Staff

Proceedings to determine the fate of some 83 lots of valued cultural items known as the Kawaihae Caves collection begin anew today at the Bishop Museum after a six-year halt.

Fourteen Hawaiian organizations are expected to take place in repatriation hearings involving some of the most significant items known in Hawaiian culture, including a wooden female figure and several stick 'aumakua.

It will also be the first time some of the claimants will get to see the items since they were retrieved from the Big Island cave complex last fall.

Hui Malama I Na Kupuna o Hawai'i Nei had received the items on loan from the museum in 2000 and placed them in the caves from which they are believed to have been taken in 1905 by three men known as the Forbes expedition and sold to the museum.

Hui Malama leaders said the items were stolen by the expedition, and that its act of returning them to the caves constituted repatriation.

But two other claimants sued Hui Malama and the museum in August 2005, insisting that the items should be returned to the museum until a final decision is made on their future as spelled out by the Native American Graves Protection and Repatriation Act.

While Hui Malama believes the items should be returned to the caves, other claimants believe they were hidden away to be preserved for the benefit of future generations.

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http://www.honoluluadvertiser.com/apps/pbcs.dll/article?AID=/20070106/NEWS01/701060326/1001/NEWS
Honolulu Advertiser, Saturday, January 6, 2007

All artifacts accounted for, in good condition

By Johnny Brannon

Disputed Hawaiian artifacts from a Big Island cave complex have been fully accounted for and are in good condition, claimants to the items and Bishop Museum officials said.

Claimants yesterday had their first chance to see the items since they were retrieved from the caves under court order last year and turned over to the museum.

The lengthy dispute over what should be done with the 83 sets of artifacts could be settled by late this year — or may never be fully resolved, in which case they would remain with the museum, officials said following the viewing.

"They're unscathed, in perfect condition, which I expected them to be," said La'akea Suganuma, head of the Royal Hawaiian Academy of Traditional Arts, one of the 14 claimants.

The items "have been cleaned and fumigated so they will no longer be at risk for any kind of insect damage, and are stored in a very safe place," said Betty Lou Kam, the Bishop Museum's vice president of cultural resources.

The full accounting should vindicate Hui Malama I Na Kupuna o Hawai'i Nei from suspicion that it had not properly cared for the items, or had not really returned them to the caves, as some claimants had alleged, said hui member William Aila. "This is an affirmation of what we originally said — that all the items were put back," he said. "Every object we said was there, was there."

REMOVED IN 1905

The artifacts are believed to have been originally placed in the caves by Hawaiians more than a century ago. They were removed in 1905 by a group known as the Forbes Expedition, which sold them to the Bishop Museum.

Hui Malama — which believes the artifacts are moepu, or burial items, that should never have been disturbed — borrowed them from the museum in 2000 and returned them to the caves without the museum's authorization.

Other claimants sued Hui Malama and the museum in 2005, and a federal court ruled that the items must be turned over to the museum while a repatriation process proceeds.

Hui Malama initially refused to disclose their location, arguing that it would be culturally offensive to disturb them. The group's leader, Edward Halealaoha Ayau, was found in contempt of federal court and jailed for three weeks — sparking an uproar among some Hawaiians. He was later released to facilitate mediation hearings.

The claimants — and any new ones who come forward — will now have the chance to argue for custody of the items, and the museum will decide whether any claim outweighs all the others.

If not, the museum will keep the items, unless all the claimants can jointly agree on what should be done with them, said museum director William Brown.

"The museum will very thoughtfully look at the evidence, and if a preponderance clearly demonstrates that one of the claimants is the most appropriate, the artifacts will be repatriated to them," Brown said.

That claimant would be free to return the items to the caves, display them, sell them or keep them as personal possessions, he said. "They could even burn them if they want because they thought they were heathen, but I doubt that any of the current claimants would do that," Brown said.

ITEMS CHERISHED

The items are among the most cherished Hawaiian cultural items known to exist and include a famous wooden female figure and several renowned stick 'aumakua, or family deities.

Trisha Kehaulani Watson, executive director of the group Kako'o 'Oiwi, said she had declined the opportunity to see the artifacts yesterday. "I refused to view them," she said. "I think it's inappropriate to view these items, and I think we show respect for them by not viewing them." She said her greatest fear is that the artifacts would be sold to collectors and become personal possessions. "They are essentially priceless and would be worth a great deal on the open market," she said.

Brown said the museum is not precluded from displaying the items in the meantime, but that there are no current plans to do so. "I personally think they are of great educational value," he said. "They are rare, and it is a good thing for people to be able to see them and learn about them."

He said he was greatly relieved that the items had been fully accounted for. If they had not been removed from the caves, they could have been damaged by the earthquakes that jolted the Big Island in October, and would certainly have been damaged by insects eventually, he said. Some objects had been covered with silverfish when they were recovered, he said.

The museum did not allow news organizations to photograph or film the artifacts yesterday.

STATUS DISPUTED

There is some debate among museum staff and some claimants as to whether any or all of the artifacts were funerary objects buried with human remains. Some believe they are cultural objects hidden for safe-keeping, perhaps after the Hawaiian kapu system of laws was abolished in 1819.

Aila, of Hui Malama, said his group has no doubt that the items are funerary. A claimant who argues they are not would essentially undermine his own claim, since claims are made under the Native American Graves Protection and Repatriation Act, he said.

Brown said he believes the debate is legitimate but had not personally concluded whether the items are funerary. He said the Bishop Museum is taking the position that they are, so as to remain consistent with its earlier determination and move forward with the repatriation process.

The final decision will involve several steps, including recommendations from the museum's staff, president, collections committee, executive committee and full board of directors.

Aila said Hui Malama "would feel more comfortable if an objective third party were to make the determination, but we have to work within the process the law allows."

The museum is asking all claimants to submit information related to their claims by March 1. The museum would then notify the National Park Service and request that an official notice be published, then make a determination within 90 days. Brown said the process could be completed by late this year if the notice is published quickly, but that there could be delays.

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http://www.kgmb9.com/kgmb/display.cfm?storyID=11112&sid=1183
KGMB9 TV News, April 11, 2007 07:15 PM

New Claim Made on Hawaiian Artifacts

Brooks Baehr - bbaehr@kgmb9.com

Descendents of a once powerful chief on the Big Island are staking claim to a collection of Hawaiian artifacts. Rightful ownership of the burial items has been in dispute for more than seven years. Now one of the chief's descendents says he has proof the items belong to him and his relatives.

The burial possessions, or moepu as they are called in Hawaiian, are being kept at Bishop Museum until the museum's board can determine the appropriate group to give them to. The items have been in the news quite a bit since the year 2000. That is when they were loaned to Hui Malama I Na Kupuna O Hawaii Nei, a group that repatriates native Hawaiian remains.

Hui Malama placed the objects along side bones in a burial cave on a cliff in Honokoa gulch on the Big Island, the same cave plantation manager David Forbes is believed to have stolen the items from in 1905. When the museum tried to get the burial possessions back, Hui Malama ended up in court because it refused to say exactly where the items had been placed. The group's executive director, Edward Halealoha Ayau, spent 21 days in prison because he would not disclose the location.

"That's what I was trying to explain to judge (David) Ezra. You are asking me to violate a committment I made. I'm not going to. I find that unconscionable," Ayau told KGMB9 Wednesday.

Ayau said, at the court's direction, the items were eventually found and last September they were returned to Bishop Museum. The museum hopes to turn them over to the "most appropriate claimant" later this year, but at least 14 native Hawaiian organizations are claiming ownership.

Now Ayau says he can prove who has a true claim to the moepu. "Here we have a document and it's from the Commission of Boundaries for the island of Hawaii," Ayau said while referring to a document he found in the state archives.

The document is dated January 10, 1876. It includes sworn testimony from a woman named Kaneahiku. She was married to a chief from the Kawaihae area of North Kohala named Mahi. Kaneahiku told the commission of boundaries, "My husband Mahi was buried in the pali of Honokoa."

The cave where Forbes is believed to have stolen the items was on a pali, or cliff, in Honokoa gulch. And because Mahi was a chief, it is reasonable to believe he was buried with lots of moepu.

Ayau told KGMB9 Kaneahiku's statement to the Commission of Boundaries is evidence burial items stolen from the cave by Forbes 102 years ago were put there when Mahi was buried and thus belong to the Mahi ohana.

"In Hawaiian thinking, what it has done is it's identified what ohana, what family, has primary kuliana (responsibility) here, and it's the Mahi family. So all descendents of Mahi have a say now in the proper disposition of those moepu," Ayau said.

Ayau said he was surprised to find that he is himself a descendent of chief Mahi. Now he hopes to get the entire Mahi ohana together. He wants them to push the museum to return the items to the family. If the Mahi family gets the items back, Ayau wants the whole family to decide what to do with them. He, of course, wants all 83 sets of burial possessions put back in the cave where he says they were originally placed when chief Mahi died.

You can contact Edward Ayau at halealoha@wave.hicu.net.

---------------------

On July 6 KITV 6 PM TV newscast reported that newly released court documents show that when contractors entered the cave to retrieve the artifacts last year, they found the entrance had been booby-trapped with explosives which could have killed anyone entering. The TV newscast showed La'akea Suganuma saying he thinks the placement of explosives there was a terrible desecration, while Eddie Ayau is shown smirking and saying that if any thief had dared to enter the cave the thief would have gotten what he had coming to him. Unfortunately there is no written news report about this, but the entire report as shown on TV is available from the station here:
www.thehawaiichannel.com/video/13638263/index.html?taf=hon

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In August 2007 La'akea Suganuma published a full-page advertisement on page 13 of the OHA monthly newspaper, "Ka Wai Ola." The entire 20-page newspaper is a 6.8 Megabyte download at
http://www.oha.org/pdf/kwo07/KWO0708.pdf
Here is Mr. Suganuma's ad in simple text:

HE HO‘OLAHA – Advertisement

He ‘Onipa‘a Ka ‘Oiä‘i‘o – Truth Is Not Changeable

The Kawaihae Cave fight over the last seven years was never about protecting the iwi kupuna.

All claimants vowed, from the very beginning, that the iwi must be returned and protected. The real issue has always been the fair and equal treatment of all the Native Hawaiian claimants. “Protect the Iwi Kupuna” was a slogan designed to cloak Hui Mälama’s shameful lies.

SELF-APPOINTED KAHU

Hui Mälama claimed kuleana saying only its members know the traditional rituals. Hui Mälama dismisses everyone else, including families, trampling their rights to mälama their own küpuna. Our tradition is ‘ohana comes first, and it was the families who preserved their traditions, passing them from generation to generation. Burial rituals varied from family to family, district to district and island to island. Our ancestors did not practice one identical burial protocol. How ironic that these self-appointed “kahu” ignore this fundamental element of our culture.

INVENTED PROTOCOLS

Observers of Hui Mälama have long wondered the source of its “traditional” protocols. We now know. Hui Mälama made them up. Founder Olive Marie Kanahele, or “Aunty Pua,” admitted that she and her late husband, Edward Kanahele, created a set of protocols for reburials because they could find none that had been passed down through the generations. She told The Honolulu Advertiser (1/13/06) that “We had to really look at what the protocol would have been if we did burials initially.” Interestingly, Hui Mälama has used cheap, imported tapa and baskets for its “traditional” Hawaiian burials. In recent years, Edward Ayau and other members of Hui Mälama have used these invented rituals to cloak theft in righteousness and to build the mystique of a spiritual superiority that gives them power over others.

GOOD INTENTIONS GIVE WAY TO BAD

Hui Mälama did good work in its early years and deserves credit for preservation of the Honokahua burials on Maui and actions to recover iwi kupuna. Sadly, that spirit has been corrupted, and Hui Mälama uses these early good deeds to rally support and cover their current misdeeds. Families have reached out to do the right thing by their ancestors and to rediscover their genealogy and culture only to be shouted down by Hui Mälama’s claims of absolute spiritual authority when it comes to traditional practices. Hui Mälama is quick to condemn Hawaiians who disagree with them as “colonized” or “Christianized” and non-Hawaiians as “racist.” In its attacks on other Hawaiians, Hui Mälama has enlisted the aid of the Native Hawaiian Legal Corporation. Instead of using its resources to protect Hawaiians, NHLC has become both a legal and propaganda tool for Hui Mälama as it has tried to marginalize and suppress other Hawaiians. How many Hawaiians needing legal help have been denied assistance because NHLC’s priorities have become so twisted?

FORBES COLLECTION

The Bishop Museum held the 83 items from Kawaihae Cave and was legally and ethically bound to return them to the proper claimants under NAGPRA. But in February 2000, Hui Mälama took them under the lie of a “one-year loan,” never intending to return them, and further lied, saying the other claimants had agreed to the loan. Hui Mälama, and NHLC, stalled and abused the system for seven years to avoid being accountable. The Royal Hawaiian Academy of Traditional Arts fought back and through the NAGPRA process, and ultimately the federal courts, was able to restore the rights of Hawaiians that Hui Mälama arrogantly claimed for itself. Hui Mälama wanted Hawaiians to think that they were fighting to protect the iwi kupuna. It claimed that the cave would collapse, the long sleep of the ancestors would be disturbed and the darkest of dark places violated. Recently, unsealed court documents tell a different story.

Hui Mälama treated the cave as a common construction site. These “protectors of the küpuna” brought in a generator and even strung electrical lights deep into the cave. Pneumatic tools, epoxy, rebar and hundreds of pounds of concrete were poured in violating the cave. Rubble from the gulch was used, adding to the desecration. Hui Mälama even left unused cement and rebar with the küpuna instead of removing its ‘öpala from the cave, possibly thinking no one would ever know.

Hui Mälama also intruded into Mummy Cave, disturbing the küpuna and even creating a booby-trap. They left Mummy Cave wide open – not even a drystack wall to protect the contents. Hui Mälama claimed that rangers from DHHL or DLNR were checking the cave, but never told them of the risk of being hurt or killed by the booby-trap. Is this Hawaiian?

INVENTED WORD: MOEPÜ

Just as Hui Mälama invented burial protocols, it made up the word moepü, passing it off as a traditional Hawaiian word meaning objects buried with the iwi. But here again Hui Mälama distorts our culture for its own end.

Hui Mälama attacks the Bernice Pauahi Bishop Museum as a racist white institution that has held sacred Hawaiian objects hostage. More invented history. It was founded by Charles Bishop in memory of his wife, Ke Ali‘i Pauahi, who had left instructions to build a museum to house the treasures of the Kamehamehas for future generations.

How ironic that while others are building museums to house the objects that they’re reclaiming under NAGPRA, Hui Mälama wants to doom our treasures to certain theft or destruction.

DOING GOOD OR DOING WELL?

Always claiming to be an army of volunteers, Hui Mälama tapped more than $1 million in government and charitable grants, spent in part for personal and other unknown expenses of its leaders. When ordered to produce its financial records, Hui Mälama claimed they had been “lost.” A few found documents showed “charitable” expenditures such as $800 to Mr. Ayau for legal work, buying his meals, buying and cleaning his clothes and even covering his bar bill at the Phoenix airport.

INVENTED DESCENDANTS

Hui Mälama founder Edward Kanahele claimed that his family was buried in Forbes Cave. Mr. Ayau now claims that a konohiki named Mahi was buried in the cave. What next?

LEARN AND DECIDE FOR YOURSELF

For too long, Hui Mälama has misled Hawaiians. A website ( www.forbescave.org ) has been created to make available to everyone previously sealed court documents, an expanded version of this article and other materials, to get to the truth of this matter and our culture. Why should you? You owe it to yourself and your children, and their children, and their children...!

– Ölohe Lua Aïwaïwa L. La‘akea Suganuma,
President of the Royal Hawaiian Academy of Traditional Arts.

www.forbescave.org

Disclaimer: This advertisement was provided to the Royal Hawaiian Academy of Traditional Arts as equal time for an ad that was provided to Hui Mälama i nä Küpuna o Hawai‘i nei in the February 2006 issue of Ka Wai Ola. The views expressed in this advertisement are those of its author and do not necessarily reflect the views of the Office of Hawaiian Affairs.

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** The following three letters to editor were all printed in the September 2007 issue of the OHA monthly newspaper, Ka Wai Ola O OHA, on page 3. They are in response to the full page ad, above, from the August issue. The entire September issue can be downloaded at:
http://www.oha.org/pdf/kwo07/KWO0709.pdf

Dividing ourselves

I read with great sorrow the full- page ad concerning the Kawaihae artifacts, published in the August edition of Ka Wai Ola.

Many did not agree with Hui Mälama and the reburial of the pre- cious artifacts of Kawaihae. From the case’s publicity and our talking stories, we understood that Hui Mälama was not always acting in good faith or with the agree- ment of all the groups or of all the Hawaiian people.

Mr. Ayau was sanctioned for his refusal to cooperate, spent time in jail, a settlement was reached and the objects were returned to the “proper” authorities.

As a highly intelligent people, we read, share, talk story and know what is happening among our people. All do not have to be in agreement, but we agree to disagree, around the table, face-to-face, with ha‘aheo. Ho‘omana‘o, and let us not do this to ourselves. ‘Ohana do not divide and conquer, for it is only ourselves we divide and they who conquer.

The public airing of our kükae and pilikia shakes the very founda- tion of who we are as a people. Ho‘opono, on bent knees. Nothing means more than who we are, and we are ‘ohana kahi. ‘Onipa‘a, i mua, i hope ‘a‘ole.

Bobi Olmos Arnold
Honolulu, O‘ahu

--------------

Forbes Cave

As a longtime scholar of things Hawaiian, with perhaps unique knowledge of Honokoa Gulch and the caves in question, L. La‘akea Suganuma’s expose on Hui Mälama in the August issue of Ka Wai Ola has inspired me to confirm that he is fully correct.

Also, the Mahi family has been misled by Edward Ayau’s grandly fabricated story that their konohiki ancestor was buried in Forbes Cave. I have read his testimony to the NAGPRA committee on this, and a transparent reason for his creating this story is so that he and others can make claims to these astonish- ing artifacts from the cave’s hidden chamber and “stack the deck” on what happens to this unique lega- cy of all Hawaiians. Ayau’s story, though romantic, is not the truth.

In 1876, Mahi’s widow, Kaneahiku, gave testimony, stating that her husband was buried “in the pali of Honokoa.” That is the key. Forbes Cave is not in the pali of Honokoa – the pali is farther up the gulch.

No Hawaiian of her time – or even an objective person today – would call the location of Forbes Cave a pali, because it is in the lower part of the gulch where that side has tapered down. In fact, it is very near the gulch floor. Ayau has failed to tell the family this for his own reasons.

I have seen one very secure cave in the actual pali of Honokoa, which is perhaps the true resting place of Konohiki Mahi.

B. Ka‘imiloa Chrisman, M.D.
Cottonwood, Arizona

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Invented burial practices

Hui Mälama has indeed become a fundamentalist organization that forces or coerces others to conform to their beliefs. They have skill- fully used the federal NAGPRA law to their own advantage, acquiring over a million dollars in grants, yet they have balked completely when this same law ran against them. I was amazed last year to read Pua Kanahele’s admission that she and her late husband made up the burial protocols Hui Mälama has so wide- ly touted. Even more “protocol” has been added to the inventions. I hope that other Hawaiians will now speak out and reaffirm their own family practices.

Hui Mälama did defile Forbes Cave. I saw this myself. Eddie Ayau’s public claim that no one would ever find it after they sealed the cave was a gross falsehood, and anyone knowledgeable about stonework would have seen their complete alteration of the cave face, which was made, no doubt, for easy access into the cave. Its entrance was previously small and very hard to find.

Their interpretation of moepü is adjusted to fit their cause. Hui Mälama has led a whole new set of Hawaiians to believe that their ancestors commonly placed grave goods with burials, like those of Egypt or Peru. This is quite untrue. Grave goods of any extent were pre- viously very uncommon in Hawai‘i, and this changed after Christian concepts to do this came into use. My concern stems not only from the need to have an accurate his- tory, but also because of my descent from the Mahi family through my Kawaihae grandfather.

Melvin Lonokaiolohia Kalahiki, Sr.
Kaneohe, O‘ahu


==============

(3) January 23: Long delays in reburial of bones uncovered during construction causes protest by Hui Malama. HM demands moratorium on all construction until Department of Land and Natural Resources fully staffs numerous vacancies and resolves backlog of longstanding reburial problems. May 24: News report (commentary?) for national distribution through Associated Press describes the overall situation of numerous burials being uncovered during new construction.

http://www.honoluluadvertiser.com/apps/pbcs.dll/article?AID=/20070123/NEWS23/701230345/1173/NEWS
Honolulu Advertiser, Tuesday, January 23, 2007

Handling of burial remains criticized

By Gordon Y.K. Pang

The state Historic Preservation Division is being criticized by a group of Native Hawaiians and archaeologists that says it is severely understaffed and fails to meet its mission to protect Native Hawaiian burials.

At a news conference yesterday in front of the Queen Lili'uokalani statue at the state Capitol, the group calling itself the Friends of the Burials Protection Program said that hundreds of burial remains are being improperly stored when they should have been reinterred. While the Lingle administration has stated that proper care for Native Hawaiian burials is critical, priority is given to ensuring that development projects move expediently, group members said.

Peter Young, director of the Department of Land and Natural Resources, which oversees the division, acknowledged some of the issues raised but denied that the agency is favoring development interests at the expense of its mandate to properly care for burials.

Moses Haia, an attorney with the Native Hawaiian Legal Corp., said the division has not fulfilled its mission. "We're here to discuss the serious lack of respect for the Native Hawaiian remains that, for the most part, remain in boxes stored in state facilities and other storage areas," Haia said.

The group said that while developments are allowed to move forward, boxes of iwi, or burial remains, continue to be stored in a shipping container exposed to the sun on Kaua'i, in a bathroom closet in Kona or under the Sam's Club/Wal-Mart parking lot in the Ke'eaumoku neighborhood.

Thomas Dye, president of the Society of Hawaiian Archaeology, said there is "widespread concern" in the archaeology community that the historic division staff has been overwhelmed by the workload. "We think it's a management/oversight issue."

David Brown, who had been the division's archaeology branch chief but whose contract was not renewed last summer, said his position and that of four others on the archaeological staff have remained vacant.

Brown said division administrator Melanie Chinen majored in political science and journalism in college. "She doesn't have the proper foundation or credentials to be in that position, nor to give directives or to sign off on documentation," he said.

Chinen said she disagrees that her job needs to be filled by an archaeologist. "The administrator needs to be a manager," she said. While she did not always agree with Brown, Chinen said, she listened to the input of other experts on her staff.

Haia also suggested that there may be other considerations. "I see pressure from development resulting in the problems that we see today," he said.

DLNR's Young said that eight of 24 division positions are currently unfilled, although some are being staffed by temporary hires. The department has taken out ads seeking to fill the positions, and DLNR actually has an employment specialist at the Human Resources office. Potential hires are simply choosing to take private sector jobs instead of government posts, Young said. He said his agency is working with the Research Corp. of the University of Hawai'i to contractually take over some of the division's work.

The department and SHPD "are focused on returning iwi and reinterring them," he said, adding that one of the vacant positions they are seeking to fill would work solely on that goal. SHPD is not expediting work on behalf of developers at the expense of burial interests, Young said. "Nobody is telling us, and we're not telling anybody, to cut corners," he said.

Edward Haleloha Ayau, head of the cultural group Hui Malama I Na Kupuna 'O Hawai'i Nei, said while Native Hawaiian groups first brought up the concerns with Gov. Linda Lingle more than three years ago, "the program is worse off now than it was when we started these discussions," Ayau said.

Haia said the state should place a moratorium on land development statewide "unless and until a number of demands are met."

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http://starbulletin.com/2007/05/24/business/story01.html
Honolulu Star-Bulletin, May 24, 2007

REBURIAL OR REDESIGN?

** Photo caption**
The Ward Village Shops area, above, is only one of a growing number of redevelopment sites where the discovery of native Hawaiian remains has given developers pause. Companies, with millions of dollars on the line, say they are trying to be culturally sensitive as they work. Descendants of the deceased say they just want their ancestors to rest in peace.

As isle development grows, old graves become obstacles Construction projects are running into costly delays as more burial sites are uncovered

By Jaymes Song
Associated Press

More and more companies seeking to develop or redevelop in Hawaii are running into an obstacle almost as formidable as the environmentalists and the protectors of the islands' laid-back charm: the dead.

Construction projects keep unearthing graves 100 years old or more, leading to legal battles, costly delays and redesigns, reburials, and hurt feelings among some Native Hawaiians. They say the dead should be allowed to rest in peace.

"What if they built a Wal-Mart at Arlington? How would people feel?" Native Hawaiian activist William Aila asked. Aila is a member of Hui Malama I Na Kupuna O Hawaii Nei, or "Group Caring for the Ancestors of Hawaii." The group was founded in 1988 after roughly 1,000 sets of remains or "iwi," were found during construction of the Ritz-Carlton hotel on Maui.

From remote sand dunes on Maui to bustling Waikiki, hundreds of sets of Hawaiian remains, or "iwi," are discovered every year. The graves -- unmarked and undocumented -- are considered sacred to native Hawaiians.

Companies say they are being culturally sensitive and abiding by state law while exercising their right to build on land they own.

Hawaii has a stringent state law protecting graves. The 1990 law prohibits removing, destroying or altering any burial sites except as permitted by the state and local burial councils. If a construction project encounters bones, the work must stop in the immediate area and authorities must be notified.

Some developers have redesigned their projects to preserve native graves.

The Ritz-Carlton Hotel on Maui, where 1,000 graves dating to the year 850 were unearthed during excavation in the late 1980s, was completely redesigned at a cost of millions and moved inland. The remains were preserved in a spot now registered as a state historic place, with signs informing visitors about its cultural significance.

More recently Fifield Cos. agreed to relocate the parking garage and make other changes in a $300 million Allure Waikiki condo project now under construction on the site of the former Wave Waikiki nightclub.

Still ongoing is the dispute over the site of the first Hawaii store planned by Whole Foods Market Inc., the nation's largest natural-foods grocer. At least 50 sets of bones have been unearthed in at the Ward Village Shops site where the store is being built as part of a mixed-use redevelopment project.

Construction on a small section of the Whole Foods site has been prohibited since last summer. Mall developer General Growth Properties Inc., which said many of the remains were discovered during an archaeological survey that it voluntarily commissioned, faces additional costs because of lawsuits and could be forced to redesign the $150 million project.

The Oahu Island Burial Council decided last year that the first 11 sets of remains should be reburied elsewhere on the property. The fate of the 40 or so other sets of bones, discovered separately in recent months, will be determined by the state Historical Preservation Division. The division has been involved in the reburial of about 3,000 sets of remains since 1991.

** Photo caption
Work proceeded near a burial site this month at the planned home of Hawaii's first Whole Foods Market. Construction on a section of the site has been halted due to the discovery of about 50 native Hawaiian remains.

The dispute follows an emotional confrontation on Wal-Mart's 10-acre property less than a half-mile away, where 64 sets of remains were found. After three years, they sit locked up in a trailer under a parking ramp, awaiting reburial.

The remains were unearthed during construction of a Sam's Club and Wal-Mart store that opened in 2004 amid protests.

Paulette Kaleikini, a descendant of the deceased at both the Wal-Mart and Whole Foods sites, said: "Why should they be removed to accommodate development? They were there first. If these burials were of Western people, would they move them?"

Aila said Wal-Mart could have redesigned the store and chose not to, which was a "demonstration of disrespect."

Wal-Mart spokeswoman Tiffany Moffatt said the company "took the necessary steps and incurred the necessary costs" to "ensure the remains were treated in accordance with state law in a culturally sensitive and appropriate manner."

Among other things, construction was suspended briefly in some spots, and Wal-Mart hired a consultant to work with the descendants.

After the bones were discovered during construction, Wal-Mart stopped work and brought in archaeologists, as required under law. The remains are in storage because they are evidence in the state's case against the archaeologists, who are challenging a $210,000 fine over allegations of desecration and failure to immediately notify authorities.

A hearing in the case against the archaeologists is set for next month. Wal-Mart said it is not involved in the case and is awaiting state approval to rebury the remains.


================

(4) KANUPA CAVE ARTIFACTS -- EMERSON COLLECTION. REVIEW OF 2006 (See Nagpra Hawaii 2006 webpage for extensive details). Artifacts originally taken from Kanupa Cave almost a century ago had gone to Bishop Museum and to the Peabody Essex Museum in Salem, Mass. Under the NAGPRA law these items were repatriated to four Native Hawaiian groups, and had allegedly been reburied in Kanupa Cave in 2003. But in 2004 federal investigators responded to a report that a collector had discovered some of those items for sale in a shop in Kona. On March 17, 2006 it was reported that a Hawaii Island man has been arrested. On March 24, 2006 Daniel W. Taylor, 39, pled guilty to conspiring with co-defendant John Carta to take the artifacts from the Kanupa Cave in June 2004. Taylor is the first person ever to be convicted in Hawai'i under the 1990 NAGPRA law, according to the Honolulu Advertiser report of March 25. John Carta pled guilty on May 26, 2006 to conspiring and actually entering the cave and removing artifacts.
NEW EVENTS IN 2007. On February 2, 2007 it was reported that John Carta has been sentenced to one year in prison plus one year of supervised probation. Daniel Taylor is scheduled for sentencing on May 15. Eddie Ayau of Hui Malama writes commentary accusing state Attorney General of shirking his duties, and raising question whether Governor Lingle's neglect of this matter is linked to her neglect of Hawaiian burials. On March 6 it was reported that John Carta died of a heart attack. Eddie Ayau of Hui Malama, and news media, hinted that the spirit world was taking revenge. On June 4 Daniel Taylor received a federal sentence of 11 months in prison as a result of plea bargain and cooperation, but state Attorney General Bennett announced he will file state felony charges of theft. Taylor's attorney asked that Taylor not be sent to serve his sentence at any prison where there are large numbers of Native Hawaiians, for fear of being attacked.

http://www.honoluluadvertiser.com/apps/pbcs.dll/article?AID=/20070202/NEWS23/702020355/1173/NEWS
Honolulu Advertiser, Friday, February 2, 2007

1-year prison term for man who stole from burial cave

By Gordon Y.K. Pang

A man who pleaded guilty to stealing funerary objects from a South Kohala burial cave and selling them at a profit in June 2004 was sentenced in U.S. District Court Wednesday to a maximum of one year in prison.

John Carta, 45, will also need to spend a year under supervised release after his incarceration, according to the sentence by U.S. Magistrate Judge Barry M. Kurren. The charge comes under the federal Native American Graves Protection and Repatriation Act designed to protect burial sites. U.S. Attorney Ed Kubo, in a news release, said Carta could have received up to five years if this were a second offense.

The burial items are known as the J.S. Emerson Collection and included wooden bowls, a gourd, a holua sled runner, a spear, kapa and cordage. Federal authorities said 157 items were recovered in all.

Believed to have first been taken from Kanupa Cave in the late 1800s and sold to museums, they were reburied in 2003 by the group Hui Malama I Na Kupuna 'O Hawai'i Nei, a Native Hawaiian group dedicated to the repatriation of Hawaiian burial remains and the objects that accompany them.

A second defendant, Daniel W. Taylor, pleaded guilty and is scheduled to be sentenced May 15. Court documents said Taylor admitted to trying to sell three items, including a palaoa, or whale-tooth pendant, for $40,000 the day after the break-in. The two were apparently acting on the orders of a third person, M.F., who has never been identified.

Kubo had previously stated that it will be up to the Native Hawaiian community to determine what should be done with the recovered items. Hui Malama is one of four groups that had filed as claimant under NAGPRA rules.

Edward Halealoha Ayau, Hui Malama executive director, praised the Office of the Inspector General for taking the lead in the case. "I believe there were others involved in this case," he said, adding that he wants the agency to continue investigating the Kanupa case as well as similar thefts. "Somebody else is out there monitoring the Federal Register, watching for the repatriation of objects because those are reported in the Federal Register."

Ayau also repeated his criticism of the state attorney general's office for failing to prosecute the case. He said that for the federal crime to have occurred, the two men also had to have been trespassing, breaking and entering, disturbing a historical site, disturbing a burial site, and theft, all of which can be brought as civil charges against the two men.

Attorney General Mark Bennett, reached Thursday night, said he could not comment on the situation other than to say that "we are still actively looking at the case."

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http://starbulletin.com/2007/02/02/news/story06.html
Honolulu Star-Bulletin, February 2, 2007

Stealer of artifacts gets prison

By Leila Fujimori

A 45-year-old Big Island man was sentenced Wednesday to a year in federal prison for his part in the theft of native Hawaiian artifacts from a burial cave in Kohala.

John A. Carta of Kailua-Kona admitted to leading a collectibles dealer to the cave and assisting him in removing the items on June 17, 2004, in exchange for $200 and an old car.

According to his lawyer, Carta made replicas that the dealer sold to tourists. Carta had pleaded guilty in federal court on May 26 to conspiracy to sell or traffic in native Hawaiian artifacts, violating the Native American Graves Protection and Repatriation Act of 1990.

U.S. Magistrate Judge Barry Kurren also sentenced Carta to a year of supervised release.

Carta, a first-time offender, received the maximum penalty of one year in prison. He could have faced a maximum five years' imprisonment had he been a repeat offender.

"The United States Attorney's Office will continue to protect the sanctity of human remains and burial objects by enforcing Section 1170(b) to prevent the desecration of burial sites," a news release issued by the U.S. Attorney's Office said.

Edward Ayau of Hui Malama I Na Kupuna O Hawaii Nei, which had repatriated the items to the cave in 1997, was pleased with the sentence. But Ayau believes the state and county should also have been simultaneously pursuing civil and criminal actions against Carta and the dealer including trespassing and desecration of a burial site. "It's not a deterrent if all Carta gets is a year in federal prison and a year probation," he said. "You have to make it so that stealing from a grave is not an option."

State Attorney General Mark Bennett said, "We are still actively reviewing the matter."

The collectibles dealer, Daniel W. Taylor of Kona, also pleaded guilty to the same charge in March. His sentencing is scheduled for May 15. Taylor had tried to sell the items by going to collectors and advertising them on the Internet. He sold at least two items -- an ancient kapa for $150 and a fisherman's bowl for $2,083.

The items were part of the J.S. Emerson Collection, which the Bishop Museum purchased in the late 1880s, and were legally transferred to Hui Malama for repatriation.

Hui Malama, the Hawaii Island Burial Council, the Office of Hawaiian Affairs and Ka La Hui Hawaii were involved in the items' repatriation to Kanupa Cave, Ayau said.

Ayau applauded federal and state agents who investigated the case. But "this crime is only partially solved," he said. "I'm interested in knowing how they knew they had been reburied," Ayau said. "I'm most interested in knowing who is it that coordinated this, who masterminded what took place." Ayau said he does not believe it was Carta. "How did he know what was placed in the cave?" he asked. "How did he know a reburial took place? How did he know these items had been put back?"

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http://starbulletin.com/2007/02/08/editorial/commentary2.html
Honolulu Star-Bulletin, February 8, 2007

State should pursue charges in theft of moepu

by Edward Halealoha Ayau and various authors

FOUR Native Hawaiian organizations, including Hui Malama I Na Kupuna O Hawai'i Nei, the Hawai'i Island Burial Council, Ka Lahui Hawai'i and the Office of Hawaiian Affairs, are the recognized claimants of funerary objects or moepu repatriated from the Peabody Essex Museum and iwi kupuna (ancestral skeletal remains) and moepu from the Bernice Pauahi Bishop Museum that originated from Kanupa Cave. Following the reburial of these cultural items in November 2003 by Hui Malama, unknown people broke in and looted Kanupa Cave, which is located on state land in Kohala.

An investigation was conducted by the Office of the Inspector General of the U.S. Department of the Interior into the theft. At the outset, the state Attorney General's Office assisted with this investigation, assigning its chief investigator, Donald Wong, to the case. Also involved were enforcement officers from the Department of Land and Natural Resources.

In 2006, the U.S. Attorney's Office obtained indictments against defendants John Carta and Daniel Taylor and proceeded with the prosecution of both men for federal offenses related to the illegal sale of certain moepu stolen from Kanupa Cave in violation of 18 USC section 1170(b). On Jan. 31, Carta was sentenced to one year in federal prison by federal magistrate Barry Kurren, which is the maximum jail sentence provided under the law (Star- Bulletin, Feb. 2). It is unclear whether Carta also was fined, a penalty also provided under federal law.

It is the opinion of the four native Hawaiian organizations that they continue to be the legal owners of these moepu by operation of the repatriation provisions of the Native American Graves Protection and Repatriation Act. As such, they wrote a joint letter to state Attorney General Mark Bennett May 25, 2006, urging him to pursue all state law violations against both defendants, including criminal and civil penalties.

In that letter, they identified the state law provisions that were violated in the course of Carta and Taylor committing unlawful trafficking of the moepu, a federal offense. Such state law violations included criminal trespass, disturbance of a historic site, disturbance of a burial site more than 50 years old in violation of HRS 6E-11, offering burial goods for sale in violation of HRS 6E-12(b), and criminal theft. Breaking into the burial cave, rifling through the burial bundles and removing the moepu amounted to clear violations of Hawaii Revised Statutes Chapter 6E, known informally as the state burials law.

IRONICALLY, on June 16, 2005, Gov. Linda Lingle signed into law HB 712, a bill sponsored by the Department of the Attorney General that strengthened the enforcement provisions of the state burials law. In the May 25, 2006, letter, the four Hawaiian organizations urged Bennett to enforce the new provisions of state law against Carta and Taylor. No response was ever provided by Bennett.

An immediate procedural concern is that by not taking any action, the state attorney general and the county prosecutor's office will forego their ability to prosecute Carta and Taylor under state criminal law because of the expiration of the statute of limitations. We hope the state will at least consider pursuing civil penalties against these two defendants.

With regard to the sentencing of defendants Carta and Taylor, we believe that they are not the only ones involved and that there is a larger scheme involving at least one other person who masterminded this theft. How did these thieves know that the moepu were reburied? How did they know when the reburial was done? How did they know where the cave is located? We urge federal and state investigators to continue their work to solve this crime and request anyone with knowledge of what took place to contact the Office of the Inspector General and the Attorney General's Office.

IN ADDITION, the same four Hawaiian organizations wrote a June 7, 2006, letter to U.S. Attorney Ed Kubo requesting that his office consult with them regarding the temporary curation of the stolen moepu and to return the funerary items following the prosecution of the defendants.

One cannot help but wonder why the state attorney general has not taken any action to enforce state law against defendants Carta and Taylor. One might argue that such inaction is consistent with the Lingle administration's lack of support for Hawaiian burials. We hope this is not the case and that the purpose for chief investigator Wong's and DLNR's involvement in the outset of this investigation is that the state intends to assess civil penalties and that the Attorney General's Office will continue to investigate the Kanupa Cave thievery until justice is finally achieved for these kupuna. Let us hope.

Edward Halealoha Ayau is executive director of Hui Malama I Na Kupuna O Hawai'i Nei. This commentary also was signed by Pualani Kanahele, Charles Maxwell Sr., William Aila, Wilma Holi, Ihilani Chu, Konia Freitas, Kaleikoa Ka'eo, Ka'ohu Seto and Poki'i Seto.

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Honolulu Advertiser, Tuesday, March 6, 2007

Cave relics thief dies month before prison date

By Gordon Y.K. Pang

One of two men found guilty of stealing Native Hawaiian funerary objects from a Big Island cave to sell for profit has died a month before he was scheduled to go to federal prison.

John Carta, 46, was found dead at a Kailua, Kona, home last Tuesday, according to a Big Island police spokeswoman and his attorney, Rustam Barbee.

While the death is still under investigation and an autopsy has been requested, "at this time, no there is no reason to suspect foul play or any intentional act," said Chris Loos, spokeswoman for the Hawai'i County Police Department.

U.S. Magistrate Judge Barry Kurren last month sentenced Carta to a year in prison for stealing the objects from Kanupa Cave in Kohala in June 2004.

Another defendant in the case, Daniel Taylor, is to be sentenced in May.

The Kanupa case, which generated wide publicity, involves items known as the J.S. Emerson Collection and included wooden bowls, a gourd, a holua sled runner, a spear, kapa and cordage. Federal authorities said 157 items were recovered in all.

Carta's body was found by a friend, Loos said.

Barbee said he learned of his client's fate through a call from a close friend of Carta's. He also got the same information from a pretrial services official at U.S. District Court in Honolulu.

Barbee said he did not know the exact circumstances of Carta's death. While he was surprised to learn of the death, he said, "the information at this time doesn't lead me to believe (the death) was suspicious at all."

CONCERN ABOUT PRISON

Carta was supposed to report to authorities on April 2 to begin his sentence. Carta said Barbee feared for his safety while incarcerated and had asked that he be allowed to serve out his one-year prison sentence at a facility on the Mainland. The court and federal prosecutors both appeared receptive to that request, Barbee said, but the Bureau of Prisons had not yet determined where he was to be imprisoned.

"The general concern was that there may be some animosity toward Mr. Taylor and Mr. Carta for their involvement in the offense," Barbee said. "With the notoriety the case received in the media, there's always a concern for some kind of retaliation or somebody thinking they had been offended in some manner to take it upon themselves to do an assault or any kind of threat."

Believed to have first been taken from Kanupa Cave in the late 1800s and sold to museums, the objects were reburied in 2003 by the group Hui Malama I Na Kupuna 'O Hawai'i Nei, a Native Hawaiian group dedicated to the repatriation of Hawaiian burial remains and the objects that accompany them.

Edward Halealoha Ayau, Hui Malama executive director, said he was not aware of Carta's death and thought he had already been imprisoned.

Ayau said mysterious deaths have befallen others who have tampered with Hawaiian burial sites. "What Mr. Carta did was very terrible, and something like this is what comes with the territory when you invade that world, which is what Mr. Carta did," Ayau said.

Barbee said state attorneys have been ready to file charges in state Circuit Court against Carta and Taylor.

Ayau has been critical of the attorney general's office for not filing charges to date but Barbee called the prospect of the state doing so "ridiculous."

Barbee said Carta felt "very deep and heartfelt remorse" about his actions at Kanupa and that he did not receive any financial gain from the episode.

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http://starbulletin.com/2007/05/24/news/story06.html
Honolulu Star-Bulletin, May 24, 2007

Burial cave looter faces state charges
The Kona man was convicted in federal court of helping a man remove artifacts

By Rod Thompson

HILO » A Kona man who pleaded guilty under federal law to conspiring to sell stolen Hawaiian artifacts from the Kanupa burial cave on the Big Island has been indicted by the state on a similar charge.

Daniel Taylor was indicted yesterday by a Big Island grand jury on a first-degree theft charge, punishable by up to 10 years in prison and a fine of $25,000.

"The state of Hawaii views any looting of Hawaiian burial sites as extraordinarily serious," said Attorney General Mark Bennett.

Taylor previously pleaded guilty to violating the federal Native American Graves Protection and Repatriation Act of 1990. He is awaiting sentencing.

Another defendant in the federal case, John A. Carta, was sentenced in February to a year in prison, but he died before beginning the sentence, said Edward Ayau, of Molokai.

Edward Halealoha Ayau's group, Hui Malama I Na Kupuna O Hawaii Nei, had been in charge of "repatriating" or returning museum objects to the cave from which they were taken by collector J.S. Emerson in 1858.

Those items, believed to number 157, were eventually placed in two museums, the Peabody Essex Museum in Massachusetts and the Bishop Museum in Honolulu.

During the 1990s, under the then-new federal law, Ayau's group sought their return. It received the Bishop collection in 1997 and the Peabody Essex collection early this decade, and returned all of the objects to Kanupa Cave.

According to information from the federal cases, Carta led Taylor, a dealer in collectible items, to the cave in North Kohala on June 17, 2004, and helped him remove items.

Carta admitted that Taylor paid him $200 and gave him an old car in exchange. Taylor sold at least two of the stolen items, including a fisherman's bowl for $2,083.

Ayau said from the beginning that Carta did not have enough knowledge to initiate the looting of the cave.

"How did they get to a particular cave? Somebody told them, and that somebody is still running loose who masterminded this," he said.

Bennett said it is "conceivable" that investigators will develop additional information leading to more charges.

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Honolulu Advertiser, June 5, 2007

Artifacts peddler gets 11 months

By Gordon Y.K. Pang

A Kona man sentenced yesterday to 11 months in federal prison for his role in conspiring to sell Native Hawaiian funerary objects and artifacts from Kanupa Cave in Kohala will likely be spending that time at a medically advanced facility.

His attorney, however, believes the sentence should have been lighter — perhaps just probation.

Daniel W. Taylor, 40, pleaded guilty last year to the federal misdemeanor charge. Last month, the state attorney general's office said it would separately charge Taylor with first-degree theft.

Taylor's doctor testified that he is severely epileptic, suffers 10 to 20 seizures a day and requires extra medical attention. Alexander Silvert, first assistant public defender and Taylor's attorney, recommended that the incarceration take place at a federal medical facility, noting that the stress of jail may worsen the condition.

Kobayashi agreed to recommend that Taylor serve his time at a facility equipped to deal with his condition. Kobayashi also said she will allow Taylor, who is free on a $10,000 signature bond, 90 days to surrender to the federal prison system.

Silvert said he also does not want Taylor to be sent to the Federal Detention Center in Honolulu, a West Coast federal prison or anywhere else with a large Native Hawaiian population for fear of his safety. Taylor and his family have received threats as a result of the publicity of the case, as has he, Silvert said.

While Taylor declined to speak at yesterday's hearing, Silvert read a statement by Taylor: "I am very ashamed of myself. ... I hope the Hawaiian community will be able to forgive me."

Silvert initially argued that Taylor should not spend any time in prison, given his cooperation with federal authorities in the case. Taylor helped locate co-defendant John Carta for federal authorities and wore a wiretapping device to help authorities gain evidence against him, Silvert said, and he helped explain the inner workings of illegal trafficking of Native Hawaiian artifacts. "That kind of cooperation is well worth 12 months (reduced sentence)," Silvert said.

Carta was also sentenced in February to a year in prison but was found dead a month later in Kona. Police said they do not suspect foul play.

Silvert said he was angry that state Attorney General Mark Bennett is choosing to press state charges against Taylor after so much time had lapsed during the federal proceedings. If found guilty, Taylor would have to spend much more time behind bars. A plea agreement reached between Taylor and U.S. attorneys ensured he would not be found guilty of a felony. "What was the point if he was going to get prosecuted in state courts?" Silvert said.

Taylor got involved with Kanupa in the first place only because Carta owed him a favor, Silvert said. "He didn't know what was in that cave, he didn't know what the Emerson collection was," Silvert said.

But Assistant U.S. Attorney Clare Connors pointed out that Taylor owned an antiques shop and had put some of the items up for auction on eBay. "He was the one who was going to sell them in his shop, over the Internet," she said. When he discovered the items were part of the Emerson collection, he tried to remove the labels, she said, and when he was first approached by authorities, he only admitted to having possession of the items he was asked about, not all of them, she said.

At one point, Connors said, Taylor tried to leave the items at Pu'uhonua o Honaunau, historically the "Place of Refuge," in an attempt to avoid prosecution. Kobayashi said Taylor tried to sell the items even after being warned not to. "The seriousness of the offense requires a term of imprisonment," she said.

Connors would not comment after the hearing, citing the upcoming state proceedings.

But Edward Halealoha Ayau, head of the group Hui Malama I Na Kupuna 'o Hawai'i Nei, the repatriation organization that returned the items to Kanupa in 2003, said Taylor deserves to be tried in state court. "There's no theft charge in this (federal) case," Ayau said, noting that the trafficking charge is just a misdemeanor. "It's the theft that led to the trafficking."

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Honolulu Advertiser, Wednesday, December 26, 2007
EDITORIAL

State must play major role in artifact probes

Whose job is it to guard against the plundering of cultural treasures, which command enormous prices on the black market? It should be government — state as well as federal — holding that duty.

In the most recent artifact case, however, it was a private citizen that acted to recover a stolen Hawaiian artifact. Campbell Estate heiress Abigail Kawananakoa intervened to assist in the recovery of an akua ka'ai, or stick image. The ka'ai was used as a sacred totem in battle and in religious ceremonies.

Kawananakoa demanded its return to a family who had received it from the widow of Prince Jonah Kuhio.

Although the ka'ai has been returned by Hawaiian arts collector and dealer Michael Horikawa, there is still a missing section, an image of a deity. Horikawa, who has said he did not know it had been stolen, is reportedly helping to track down that missing part.

Where is state law enforcement in all of this? Mark Bennett, attorney general, said the state does prosecute and follow tips on stolen artifacts, although he could not comment on specific probes.

Taxpayers can only hope that the state will actively pursue leads and investigate possible charges that could arise from this case.

Authorities in other states where the theft of native artifacts is an even more chronic problem have been part of an aggressive crackdown.

To name one example: A working group, involving federal and local agencies in New Mexico, local authorities in Colorado, Utah and Arizona, investigates crimes.

In Hawai'i, a move is under way to correct a chronic staffing shortage by hiring enforcement officers at the state Department of Land and Natural Resources. It would be logical for this enhancement to produce an enduring force, similar to Mainland efforts, to counter the looting of the Isles' historic legacy.


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(5) WARD CENTER (O'AHU) BONES INADVERTENTLY UNCOVERED DURING CONSTRUCTION
REVIEW FROM 2006:
11 sets of ancient Hawaiian burial remains were found in March 2006 during a major commercial and residential renovation planned for the Ward Centers complex in Kaka'ako. The O'ahu Island Burial Council heard from two families claiming to be "cultural descendants" of Hawaiians who formerly lived in that area, and who want the bones to stay exactly where they were found on the construction site. But landowner/developer General Growth Properties Inc. submitted a detailed burial plan to relocate the remains to a different part of the project site. The $100 million-plus expansion plan for the Ward Village Shops includes a Whole Foods Market, an upscale supermarket, a 17-story rental apartment building, assorted retail shops and a seven-story parking complex. On September 14, 2006 it was reported that the O'ahu Island Burial Council voted 6-4 that the bones can be moved; but more delays are expected.
NEWS FROM 2007: On March 29 it was reported that the State of Hawaii has approved the burial council proposal to rebury the bones a short distance from where they were found but away from current construction and future pedestrial traffic -- a decision for moving the bones that was opposed by most alleged descendants but endorsed by some. Bones will be stored in an air conditioned trailer for one or two years until reburial after construction is finished. A May 2 news report says 36 more sets of bones have been recently discovered in addition to the original 11. June 28 report says State Historic Preservation Division is asking the developer to redesign the project to allow remains to be preserved in place. A July 7 report says a total of 53 sets of bones have now been found, and there appears to be a large burial pit under a proposed condo tower's foundation which could contain hundreds more. On October 24 the number has risen to 63 sets of bones.

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Honolulu Advertiser, Thursday, March 29, 2007

Developer gets OK to rebury iwi on site

By Andrew Gomes

The developer of a retail and residential complex at Ward Centers has received state approval to reinter Hawaiian burial remains discovered on the project site a year ago, and yesterday planned to start moving the remains to an air-conditioned trailer for temporary shelter.

Construction had been halted in the vicinity of the remains, creating some delay for the project called Ward Village Shops that includes a Whole Foods Market, a 17-story rental apartment building, assorted retail shops and a parking garage at the diamondhead end of Auahi Street in Kaka'ako.

The remains, or iwi, will be placed in a secure trailer on the project site for one to two years until construction of the project is substantially complete.

Final reinterment will place the iwi at two sites near where they were discovered, as agreed to in a burial treatment plan approved last week by the State Historic Preservation Division of the Department of Land and Natural Resources.

Ward Village construction will be allowed to advance in the area of the remains after they are removed from the ground, which is estimated to take two to three weeks, according to the plan from project developer and landowner General Growth Properties.

General Growth representatives could not be reached yesterday for comment. The company previously said it expects the $100 million-plus project to open next year.

A blessing for the iwi was held yesterday.

Iwi reinterment was opposed by most of the 30 individuals from four families recognized by the state as cultural descendants of the area.

But the O'ahu Island Burial Council in September voted 6-4 in favor of relocation, which was supported by some cultural descendants who believed that moving the iwi away from construction was proper.

Paulette Kaleikini, a member of the Keawemahi family descended from the area, maintains that relocation amounts to desecration. But she said she prefers the site agreed upon for reinterment over a site initially proposed by General Growth.

Eleven sets of remains were discovered primarily in the 'ewa-makai and diamondhead-makai sections of the nearly five-acre property. General Growth's initial proposal was to rebury the remains in a diamondhead-mauka section of the site that would have allowed reinterment sooner.

"That would have been more desecration," Kaleikini said, explaining that General Growth's recommended reburial site will be used as a delivery area and was far from the original burial sites.

Melanie Chinen, Historic Preservation Division administrator, said a majority of the area's recognized cultural descendants favored the approved sites for reburial.

The iwi will be reburied in two places outside the walls of the complex relatively close to the original burial sites, and include buffer zones to protect the areas from pedestrian traffic.

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Honolulu Advertiser, Thursday, April 12, 2007

Reburial of stored Hawaiian iwi sought

By Gordon Y.K. Pang

KUALOA — Frustrated members of the O'ahu Island Burial Council yesterday said they want quicker action on the reburial of at least some of the iwi kupuna, or human remains, dug up during construction of the Wal-Mart/Sam's Club complex on Ke'eaumoku Street.

They also want more communication between the State Historic Preservation Division, which is tasked with oversight of burial finds, and the recognized descendants of the remains.

Commission member Linda Kaleo Paik said after its monthly meeting that reburial should be a priority.

"This council strongly believes that what happened with Wal-Mart is a travesty," Paik said. "We need to have closure. Having kupuna in boxes underneath the (store's parking) ramp is not the ideal situation in any religion, any human sentiment."

The 62 sets of remains have been in temporary storage in a remote site of the complex since 2005, pending the outcome of a quasi-judicial proceeding looking into charges that archaeologists working on the site tampered with the iwi. The State Historic Preservation Division recommended that the Board of Land and Natural Resources fine the two archaeological firms and their employees $210,000 as a result of their actions on the construction site.

The contested-case hearing, which will give the various sides involved in the dispute more of a forum to present their arguments, is scheduled to begin on June 17.

The commission yesterday voted to urge the SHPD to seek the immediate release of the estimated 40 to 42 sets of remains that are not being used in the contested-case hearing as evidence of tampering.

It also urged the SHPD to keep recognized descendants appraised regularly of what is happening with the iwi.

The commission also agreed to, at its meeting next month, reassess the burial plan for all the remains to address concerns raised by cultural descendants that the size of the reburial vault is too small to be culturally appropriate for all the remains.

Edward Halealoha Ayau, one of the recognized descendants, and Moses Haia, who represents another recognized descendant, said they were pleased with the council's recommendations.

"Our No. 1 concern is not the enforcement action (against the archaeologists), it's when the kupuna are going to be reburied," Ayau told council members. "We want to know when the kupuna are going to be available to be put back."

SHPD administrator Melanie Chinen did not attend yesterday's burial council meeting.

Also yesterday, burial council members were formally told that an additional 11 sets of remains were found at the construction site of a retail and residential complex at Ward Centers.

Details given to burial council members by SHPD staff were sketchy.

Dwight Yoshimura, senior vice president of developer/landowner General Growth Properties, later told The Advertiser that the 11 newly discovered sets were found while workers were moving 10 previously identified sets of iwi into a secured, air-conditioned trailer on the property for temporary keeping.

After General Growth informed SHPD officials about the find, the developer was given approval to store them at the trailer with the other remains, Yoshimura said.

The latest finds are not causing further delays for the Ward Village Shops, a project that includes a Whole Foods Market, a 17-story rental apartment building, assorted retail shops and a parking garage at the diamondhead end of Auahi Street in Kaka'ako, he said.

The grocer is expected to open next year.

Council member Kehau Abad said she's worried that the additional finds signal that there may be many more burials on the five-acre site.

Adam Johnson, SHPD assistant O'ahu archaeologist, told council members "there could be more."

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http://starbulletin.com/2007/04/12/news/story02.html
Honolulu Star-Bulletin, April 12, 2007

More bones found at Whole Foods site
The Ward Village burial plan is questioned as more remains are found at the construction site

By Nina Wu

An additional 10 sets of human remains have been discovered at the Ward site of Whole Foods Market's planned first Hawaii store. The bones were discovered while digging up the 11 sets of human remains that the state had approved earlier for removal for construction.

The discovery is the latest turn in a dispute between the Native Hawaiian Legal Corp., which has opposed the removal of the iwi, and developer General Growth Properties.

General Growth, which says the project is on schedule for completion in 2008, is planning a mixed-use project at the former Ward Village Shops site, including retail space and a 17-story tower containing apartments and a parking garage.

The state reported yesterday that 10 additional sets of human remains have been discovered at the Ward Village Shops site slated for a mixed-use project anchored by Whole Foods Market.

These additional bones -- or iwi -- were discovered by archaeologists while exhuming 11 sets of previously discovered human remains as approved by a burial treatment plan several weeks ago.

Assistant Oahu archeologist Adam Johnson reported the "inadvertent discovery" to the Oahu Island Burial Council, which met yesterday at Kualoa Regional Park.

The iwi were discovered on both the Diamond Head and Ewa sides of the 6-acre site, where General Growth Properties plans a complex with a mix of retail space and a 17-story apartment building and parking garage.

Earlier this month, Whole Foods said the opening of their Ward store would be pushed back into 2009. But General Growth Properties Senior Vice President Dwight Yoshimura said yesterday the overall project is still on track to be completed in 2008.

In late March, General Growth was given the green light to move the remains after the state approved a burial treatment plan. The bones are to be kept for one to two years in an air-conditioned trailer during construction, then reburied at the site.

"There's no delay," said Yoshimura. "We've been working with the cultural descendants as well as the state Historic Preservation Division in addressing these inadvertent finds."

But at least one cultural descendant, Paulette Ka'anohiokalani Kaleikini, is livid. "My concern, like I have told the Oahu Island Burial Council before, is for the iwi kupuna which will not be found during the disinterment," said Kaleikini. "Those that will not be found will be crushed by the 1,100 piles of concrete that is scheduled to be driven into the project area." Kaleikini said she learned on her own of the additional iwi and has not yet been informed of them by the state.

When the 11 sets of iwi were previously identified at Ward, she felt the site should have been designated as a cemetery and protected under state law. "All effort should have been exhausted to press the developer for more redesigning of this project," she said. "The developers should have been sent back to their drawing boards. ... All they did was offer some lame excuse that they could not redesign their project because it was too late."

Melanie Chinen, administrator for the state Historic Preservation Division, was not available for comment yesterday.

In late February the Native Hawaiian Legal Corp. filed suit against General Growth, the state Board of Land and Natural Resources and the burial council, seeking to stop the removal of the bones. Staff attorney Moses Haia said yesterday he will amend the suit to include the additional 10 sets of iwi or file another one. Developers should be more thorough in conducting archaeological surveys before moving forward with construction, he said. "Let's provide at least some dignity and respect before you open your doors and make a cent out of the development," he said. Kaleikini said she is angry and bitter at the state system, which she feels failed to protect her kupuna.

Yoshimura declined to comment on legal proceedings. "We have done everything we could, and I think the record will speak for itself," he said. "We have followed all the appropriate proceedings and legal requirements in pursuing our project."

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Honolulu Advertiser, Friday, April 13, 2007
EDITORIAL

Wal-Mart site remains should be buried soon

Few issues have been as unsettled, and unsettling, as the delayed reburial of human remains unearthed in recent Honolulu development projects.

Particularly distressing has been the case at the Ke'eau-moku Street Wal-Mart site involving dozens of sets of Native Hawaiian bones, or iwi. A bitter dispute over how to treat the remains has lasted for four years, with the remains languishing in the undignified limbo of a trailer positioned beneath a parking ramp at the shopping center.

It's even more tragic that some reasonable settlement couldn't have been reached short of the final delay: a quasi-judicial state proceeding over allegations that archaeologists illegally "tampered" with the remains. At least, that public proceeding — a state Historic Preservation Division contested-case hearing — now is set to begin at 8:30 a.m. June 12 at the Department of Land and Natural Resources education room.

More recently, there's been an encouraging move to find a settlement. The O'ahu Island Burial Council is pressing for the prompt reburial of remains not needed as evidence in that case, a request that the state should shepherd through as quickly as possible.

It is also heartening to see that the state approved a burial plan for remains unearthed during construction at a Ward Centers complex. More bones were uncovered in recent weeks, and they will be reburied together with the other remains.

Developers need to start with the assumption that burials are common in this area and to plan for minimal disturbances at the site.

But when disturbances can't be avoided, a route toward prompt resolution and reburial should be sought. Prolonging the battles serves no purpose. It certainly does not extend the respect that should be shown on burial grounds.

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Honolulu Advertiser, Wednesday, May 2, 2007

36 more sets of 'iwi found at Ward site

By Gordon Y.K. Pang

The unearthing of more than 45 sets of ancient Hawaiian human remains at a Kaka'ako construction site in recent months is alarming some Hawaiians.

Construction crews at General Growth Properties' Ward Village Shops project have found 36 sets of remains, or 'iwi, on the six-acre site, future home of Hawai'i's first Whole Foods Market.

That's in addition to 11 sets of 'iwi previously found there. Dwight Yoshimura, General Growth Properties' senior vice president, confirmed the latest finds to The Advertiser yesterday.

Paulette Kaleikini, a cultural descendant of the remains, said she learned last month that in the process of relocating the original 11 sets, General Growth crews found 11 more.

But it wasn't until Friday, at the deposition of a former state archaeologist in a related court proceeding, that Kaleikini and others with an interest in the 'iwi learned the second find had climbed to 36. A cultural descendant is someone who can prove her ancestors once lived within a certain ahupua'a, or traditional Hawaiian land division.

The project has been a continuing source of concern for the descendants, who opposed General Growth's initial plan to relocate the original 11 'iwi to a separate location. Kaleikini and other descendants, citing traditional Hawaiian culture, asked that they remain in place. However, the O'ahu Island Burial Council voted 6-4 in favor of the relocation last fall.

"If the council were aware that the burial sites contained at least 47 sets of remains, it may have decided differently," Kaleikini said. "The council was concerned at its last meeting that there might be more burials at that time. Now it has come true."

SURPRISING FINDS

Yoshimura said the additional discoveries have surprised him and others at General Growth. "We did a very extensive inventory survey of the six-acre parcel and we only discovered 11," he said. "We did our best to see whether or not there were any previously identified remains and the only ones we found were those 11."

Archaeologists have notified the State Historic Preservation Division of the findings when they happen as required, Yoshi-mura said.

"We want to be respectful and sensitive to this whole issue," he said.

Yoshimura said he is unclear what impact the new finds will have on the project, adding that they were found on the 'ewa-makai end of the property.

"For the most part, the majority of the construction is occurring away from this particular area," he said.

The project includes a Whole Foods Market, a 17-story rental apartment building, assorted retail shops and a parking garage at the diamondhead end of Auahi Street. The $100 million project is expected to be done during the first half of next year.

NEW CLASSIFICATION?

Melanie Chinen, administrator with the historic preservation division, would not comment on the Kaka'ako project, citing pending litigation involving her agency.

Attorney Moses Haia of the Native Hawaiian Legal Corp., which represents Kaleikini, said because the 36 new sets are being classified as "inadvertent" burial finds, the State Historic Preservation Division has final say on the future of the 'iwi.

Haia, Kaleikini and others want the newly found 'iwi classified as "previously discovered," which would leave their final resting place in the hands of the burial council.

Chinen already has given the OK for three of the sets to be reinterred with the original 11 and is expected to now make a determination on the remaining 33 sets, Kaleikini said.

A group of descendants, led by Kaleikini of the Keawemahi family and Edward Halealoha Ayau of Hui Malama I Na Kupuna 'o Hawai'i Nei, said they will hold a news conference at the construction site in front of Auahi Street today to raise their concerns with the growing number of burial finds.

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http://starbulletin.com/2007/05/03/business/story01.html
Honolulu Star-Bulletin, May 3, 2005

Protesters seek to halt Ward shops construction
A group of protesters calls for a stop to the project after more sets of remains are found

By Nina Wu

Controversy over the Ward Village Shops project site is growing more heated as the number of sets of native Hawaiian remains has gone from 11 to 47.

A small group of protesters in front of the construction site yesterday morning called for a stop to the project in light of the new information.

The developer, Chicago-based General Growth Properties Inc. should have completed a more comprehensive survey before proceeding with the project, they said.

"It's clearly a significant concentration, and likely a burial ground," said Moses Haia, attorney for Native Hawaiian Legal Corp.

At least five of the new remains are of infants or youths, according to Haia.

The 6-acre site is expected to be home to Hawaii's first Whole Foods Market, with a 17-story rental housing tower above it, additional retail shops and a parking garage. General Growth has set the $100 million project's expected completion date for 2008.

Paulette Ka'anohi Kaleikini, one of the cultural descendants and plaintiff in a suit against General Growth filed by the Native Hawaiian Legal Corp., was angry over the new finds. Kaleikini said she had requested a site visit, but never got a response from the state. "This revelation changes everything and erodes the very foundation of the prior archaeological work on which the OIBC relied," she said. "My ancestors have been completely disrespected by this flawed process." She said state law requires disclosure of the additional sets to the Office of Hawaiian Affairs and burial council members, but that has not been done.

"Here we go again," said Eddie Halealoha Ayau, also a protester. "I feel like I'm at Wal-Mart all over again." Ayau, leader of Hui Malama I Na Kupuna, is a cultural descendant of the iwi found at the Keeaumoku Wal-Mart, most of which are tied up in legal proceedings. The activist in late 2005 was sentenced by a judge to prison for not disclosing the location of 83 items on loan from the Bishop Museum. The group had reburied the items in a Big Island cave, according to ancestors' wishes, it said.

Haia said he learned of the additional 36 sets at the deposition of departing state assistant Oahu archeologist Adam Johnson last week. In April, Johnson reported to the burial council that 10 additional sets had been found while disinterring the other remains, and that there could be more. Johnson's last day with the division was Friday. Because the new discoveries are considered "inadvertent" rather than "previously identified," according to Haia, they are under the jurisdiction of the state's Historic Preservation Division.

Melanie Chinen, administrator for the division, could not be reached for comment yesterday.

Dwight Yoshimura, senior vice president of General Growth Properties, said construction is continuing while the company awaits further instruction from the state.

Meanwhile yesterday, the protesters faced a challenge from another person who also claims to be a cultural descendant. Adrian Keohokalole, a heavy equipment operator working at the site, said at this point it's best to let the development go forward. He said he's worked at the site since the first iwi were discovered, and that not all of the additional ones are full sets, but bits and pieces. "What we've done here is appropriate," said Keohokalole. "At this point, we should continue to remove it and take care of it. ... Let's take care of it and move on."

But Kawika McKeague, a burial council member who voted against relocation of the iwi last fall, said the construction should be temporarily halted in light of the new finds. McKeague, who said he was speaking as an individual, said the council had asked General Growth to come back with design alternatives that would leave the iwi undisturbed, but those alternatives were never presented. "Had we been privy to more information and had the archaeological survey been more complete, perhaps the decision would have been different," he said. Since some of the new iwi sets belong to children, he fears that the disinterment has resulted in the separation of families. "Until we sort out some of the legal issues, and cultural issues as to what is the best treatment of these kupuna, I would call for a temporary halt of construction."

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http://honoluluadvertiser.com/apps/pbcs.dll/article?AID=/20070507/OPINION01/705070302/1105/OPINION
Honolulu Advertiser, Monday, May 7, 2007
EDITORIAL

Ward issue highlights flaw in burials process

Of all the myriad functions that sometimes overwhelm the state Department of Land and Natural Resources, the element that could be the most troublesome is often overlooked in the crush of seemingly more pressing public concerns.

It's the duty to carry out the state burial-protection law. Few outside the Native Hawaiian organizations and the developers who contend with this issue pay much heed to it, but the invariably knotty encounters with this law will continue to mire projects and whip up more conflict than necessary.

In the case of the Ward Village development, another example of poor communications has surfaced. The O'ahu Island Burial Council and the families who claim to be descended from individuals buried in the broad Kaka'ako area found out far too late that 36 additional sets of remains were unearthed at the site of the Whole Foods supermarket project.

In addition, the Office of Hawaiian Affairs has filed a complaint with DLNR alleging that it was not notified about the find as the law requires.

So far, there's no indication that the failure to notify the right people is anything more than a lapse, but it was a serious one. And it's a clear signal that reviewing the operations of the State Historic Preservation Division should be top of mind for Allan Smith, the interim DLNR director.

The fact that the historic preservation office has struggled to fill needed positions surely has contributed to the dysfunction. This problem needs to be solved before any other improvements could reasonably be expected.

The bottom line is that the law was established to enable developments to be planned with ample consideration for the wishes of descendants. Burials must be treated with respect, in any culture, and the families here need to have a voice in decisionmaking.

Leaving people out of the loop is not the way to achieve that goal.

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http://www.honoluluadvertiser.com/apps/pbcs.dll/article?AID=/20070516/OPINION02/705160373/1108
Honolulu Advertiser, May 16, 2007, two letters to editor

BURIALS
GREED IS MAIN BARRIER TO BURIALS PROTECTION

There has been a lot of recent publicity on historic preservation projects gone bad, and on the poor performance of the State Historic Preservation Division .

These various critiques rarely, if ever, mention the most important factor in all of this, which is the role and responsibility of landowners and developers to malama (take care of) cultural and historic resources.

The fundamental problem is greed and unrestrained profit-taking, mostly by people who have other places to go when this place is used up.

To blame the inefficiencies of the pathetically under-funded SHPD, where I worked for eight impossibly busy months in 2006, is like blaming Parks and Recreation for people who litter. We might as well blame ancient Hawaiians for building their sites and burying their dead in our way!

Facing the truth isn't easy, especially when the worst offenders will stop at nothing to get their projects completed, including suing anyone who tells it like it is and aggressively cutting corners at every conceivable point in the historic preservation review process.

Fixing historic preservation must start with the recognition that greedy landowners and developers are the source of the problem.

Chris Monahan
Kailua

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RELOCATING GRAVES CAN BE DONE WITH RESPECT

It is interesting that undocumented burial sites produce such high emotions among some Hawaiian families. Most of us are accustomed to the tradition of relocating lost graves to a more reverent and respectful permanence. The iwi found at the Ward construction site is a case in point.

I wonder whether reverence for ancestral bones or mixed politics about land and culture are the real issues here. Relocating a grave is not a violation of values. Many growing societies must contend with the eventuality of less space for the dead and even lesser space for the living. Large societies improvise and revise their values toward the dead.

My mother attempted to devote our lives in a Shaman Buddhist tradition, which disrupted our lives by worshipping the dead. In her later years, she regretted burdening her children with the belief that the dead were punishing us because of our disobedience to tradition.

I respect those Hawaiians who have the nobleness and poise to know the right place for the dead and living in a modern world. They restore this non-Hawaiian's faith in the soundness of Hawaiian motives.

It is my hope that the Hawaiian nation will take the necessary and reverent steps to relocate iwi to permanent memorial tombs as a legitimate part of their modern culture. I'm sure that their kupuna wouldn't want their children to be burdened under a future of oppression by the dead.

Michael S. Teruya
Honolulu

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http://starbulletin.com/2007/06/28/news/story04.html
Honolulu Star-Bulletin, June 28, 2007

State urges Ward adjustments to protect Hawaiian remains

By Nina Wu

The state has sent a letter to General Growth Properties recommending that it leave in place the majority of native Hawaiian remains that have been found at its Ward construction site.

In addition, the State Historic Preservation Division is asking the developer to consider a redesign of the project, originally planned as a mixed-use retail center anchored by a Whole Foods Market with a 17-story apartment tower on the 6-acre site bound by Auahi, Kamakee and Queen streets.

In a letter dated June 25, division administrator Melanie Chinen recommended that 30 sets of the remains, or iwi, be preserved in place. The site originally was known to contain 11 iwi, but that number has since grown to at least 47.

She also recommended that iwi that already have been disinterred be reburied close to where they were originally found.

Among some of the reasons cited:

» Areas with a concentration of remains require greater consideration.

» The burials were located within a native Hawaiian burial ground.

» The majority of cultural descendants contacted preferred that the iwi remain in place.

» These specific 30 burials are under the footprint of the proposed apartment tower.

The division also requested that additional remains found at neighboring Kakaako sites -- including the Koolani condominium and Queen Street extension -- be interred with the 30 remains.

Although General Growth has asked the division to consider the economic impact of a redesign, Chinen wrote that the state concluded "the facts which require greater consideration for preservation in place far outweigh the reasons presented by the applicant to relocate."

If the structure proposed for the burial ground is relocated or redesigned, Chinen said, the burials could be left in place without exposing them to harm.

"We believe this action would bring a culturally appropriate closure to this issue and provides General Growth Properties the opportunity to publicly demonstrate its good will towards native Hawaiian cultural values," said the letter. "Furthermore, it would relieve General Growth of the need to construct a separate burial preserve for these remains."

The letter indicated that General Growth had considered four additional design options for the project but found none of them viable.

A spokesman for General Growth could not be reached for comment by press time yesterday.

In late 2004, the Hawaii Community Development Authority granted General Growth a development permit for the project, consisting of a 17-story rental apartment along with more than 220,000 square feet of retail space and a parking garage.

Whole Foods Market is still expected to anchor the center, although it now plans to open a smaller store at Kahala Mall first.

Paulette Ka'anohi Kaleikini, one of the cultural descendants and plaintiff in a suit against General Growth filed by the Native Hawaiian Legal Corp., said yesterday she was happy with the division's recommendation.

"All these rules were put in place so that these kupuna could be protected," said Kaleikini, "and by following all the laws to protect and preserve the kupuna, I think she (Chinen) followed what was already in place. By preserving it in place, it protects the integrity of my ohana."

Alan Murakami, an attorney with the Native Hawaiian Legal Corp., said the division made the right call, but hopes it would also protect the additional burials at the site.

"Perhaps this highlights the degree of care with which archaeologists should test for burials at an early stage of the planning and design of such projects," said Murakami. "It is always better to do the right advance archaeological work first before committing to construction which must be stopped to protect those cultural resources which could have been identified earlier."

The Oahu Island Burial Council, after all, was presented with information on only 11 burials before making its vote to relocate them last fall, he said, and might have voted differently.

"It goes to show that cultural sites such as these cannot be viewed in isolation," he said.

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http://starbulletin.com/2007/07/02/editorial/letters.html
Honolulu Star-Bulletin, July 2, 2007, TWO letters to editor

Economy could suffer if activists prevail

Your June 28 front page article said the state Historic Preservation Division has asked developer General Growth Properties to redesign its Ward area retail and housing complex in order to keep in place the native Hawaiian remains found there and to rebury remains already disinterred. Prior to the Hawaiian activist movement, when contractors discovered human remains they were allowed to rebury them in the public cemetery at the landowner's expense. Now, it appears that this division of the state government is making recommendations that, if followed, will surely negatively affect the state's economy and the majority of our society within our islands.

If the ruling of the Historic Preservation Division is sustained, new construction, both private and public (such as low-income housing, highways, streets and perhaps the planned fixed rail system), will be affected. The construction sector, and the various supporting and related businesses, could be forced to lay off workers and close their doors.

With less taxable income, the state and county governments might have to lay off civil service workers and greatly reduce expenditures for government projects, social services, education, health and security.

Wilbert W. W. Wong Sr.
Kaneohe

Ancients show the way even from the grave

Regarding "State urges developer to redesign Ward Project," Star-Bulletin, June 28: Funny how life works. Here we have Oahu bending, some would say breaking, with unchecked development, the subsequent overpopulation and an almost imperceptable urban blueprint. Too short-sighted to plan for future generations, we continue the mass degradation of Oahu, complete with an eroding quality of life.

Lo and behold, who should rise up and save us from ourselves? The ancients whose bones and spirits will no longer tolerate the blight of rampant development on the lands they once wandered.

Pat Kelly
Honolulu

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http://starbulletin.com/2007/07/07/news/story03.html
Honolulu Star-Bulletin, July 7, 2007

Diggers find burial pit
An archaeologist expects to find hundreds of remains under the Kakaako project site

The state has asked General Growth Properties to dig deeper around the site beneath the planned Whole Foods Market at Ward after the discovery of still more native Hawaiian remains.

The latest count of iwi, or Hawaiian burials, at the Ward Village site, has now grown to 53, according to Melanie Chinen, administrator of the state Historic Preservation Division.

But it is not the current count that has prompted the state division to request further study of the construction site. It is the setting of the most recent discoveries, which a staff archaeologist says could contain multiple burials. And another archeologist says the total could be in the hundreds.

In a letter to General Growth last week, the division describes another discovery of a burial during a June 5 visit to the Diamond Head side of the construction site, where a 67,000-square-foot Whole Foods store is planned.

Staff archaeologist Jenny Pickett also believes that one of the sites in that vicinity -- referred to as "site 49" -- could contain multiple burials due to the size of the burial pit there.

Since 2004, General Growth has had plans for a mixed-use retail center with a parking garage and a 17-story rental residential tower on a 6-acre site bounded by Auahi, Kamakee and Queen streets.

Just three days before the June 28 letter, the historic division had asked General Growth to consider redesigning its project in order to preserve in place 30 sets of remains found earlier.

The majority of those remains, on the Ewa side of the construction site, near the Pier 1 Imports store, were beneath the structural core of the planned residential tower.

General Growth senior vice president Dwight Yoshimura has said that the company is reviewing the state's redesign request. It had previously told the agency that redesign of the $100 million project was impractical.

The state's latest request calls for an additional excavation in the area planned for the Whole Foods store, on the Diamond Head side of the construction site fronting Auahi Street.

Hal Hammatt of Cultural Surveys Hawaii, which is conducting the archeological study for General Growth, has requested permission to expand testing of the unexcavated sections of the Whole Foods site to determine the extent of the burials. General Growth representatives could not be reached for comment on the latest request by press time.

But the additional discoveries come as no surprise to Thomas Dye, president of the Society for Hawaiian Archaeology. He says at 53, the total count is just a sixth of about 335 that he estimates are at the Ward Village site. Dye said any professional archaeologist would have made that prediction, given the sample size and type of soil, when the first 11 sets were originally discovered. And it was clear from the beginning that further investigation would have been appropriate for the site, he said.

The Oahu Island Burial Council, based on the initial information it was given, approved a plan last fall to remove and rebury the 11 sets of remains at the site. Several members said they might have voted differently if they had known of the additional burials. "From a professional archaeologist's point of view," said Dye, "it never made sense to me how the decision could be made with no recognition that there are likely to be hundreds of burials at the site."

Dye, who now has his own company, served six years as the state's Oahu archaeologist during the 1990s. He reviewed the initial survey of the site and said the state should go one step further, requiring General Growth to excavate every piece of the property "underlain by sand" that is going to be developed. Burials discovered within old beach sands are likely to be native Hawaiian burials. "Only then will the likely impact of the proposed development on traditional Hawaiian burials be known," he said.

Besides hundreds of iwi, Dye said, the Ward Village site contains a unique archaeological site, much of which would be destroyed by development. "Archaeologists have searched for decades to find an undisturbed deposit like this in Kakaako," he said.

** SEE LETTER BY THOMAS DYE, NEXT, WHICH CORRECTS A BAD IMPLICATION OF AN OUT-OF-CONTEXT QUOTE

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http://www.honoluluadvertiser.com/apps/pbcs.dll/article?AID=/20070711/OPINION02/707110330/1108
Honolulu Advertiser, July 11, 2007

UNIQUE FIND AT PROJECT SHOULD BE INVESTIGATED

The Associated Press story about human remains at the Ward project (July 8) includes an out-of-context quote from me that makes it sound as if the Society for Hawaiian Archaeology is looking for undisturbed burial sites to excavate. It is not.

The quote refers to an intact traditional Hawaiian living surface found at the Ward Villages project. This unique find does not contain burials.

It does contain information about everyday traditional Hawaiian life in Kaka'ako. Our society is concerned that the state has not required the site be investigated. We are worried that the site itself and what can be learned from it, will be lost.

Thomas S. Dye
President, Society for Hawaiian Archaeology

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http://starbulletin.com/2007/08/03/business/story02.html
Honolulu Star-Bulletin, August 3, 2007

Kakaako rich with Hawaiian history
Hundreds of iwi have been uncovered in the area, which once was a thriving community

By Nina Wu

Hawaiian cultural consultant Lurline Naone-Salvador is not surprised that parts of Kakaako are burial sites for hundreds of native Hawaiian remains.

Having served two terms on the Oahu Island Burial Council as a Kamehameha Schools representative, she's had plenty of experience dealing with the sensitivity of burial issues within a development.

She credits her father, Herbert Naalohaelua Naone Sr., for much of her cultural knowledge.

With her consulting company, Kahili'ula Associates, Naone-Salvador researches and recommends appropriate Hawaiian names to developers for their projects.

Among those she has named are: Keola La'i, Alexander & Baldwin's newest residential high-rise on Queen Street; and Nanea, the Charles Schwab golf course on the Big Island. She's also done extensive research on the Kakaako area.

"Kakaako was once a thriving community, with agricultural terraces, residences of ali'i (royalty) and docks for foreign ships," said Naone-Salvador.

Kamehameha I had a residence in Kakaako, she said, along with his family, and personal kahuna, Hewahewa, who was his chief adviser.

Kakaako, also known as Kewalo, according to archaeological reports, was a place of recreation -- particularly around the shoreline. The waters were used for cleansing, fishing, canoe landings and religious practices. Naone-Salvador, in her research, found that selected individuals were drowned in the waters of Kewalo and then taken to Punchbowl and offered as sacrifices.

Sailors arriving on a foreign ship in 1853 brought smallpox, which spread and inflicted thousands of Hawaiians. Because of the large numbers, many were buried in shallow graves, said Naone-Salvador.

Now, Kakaako also has become a hotbed of development, and home to several shiny, high-rise residential towers and retail centers.

The unearthing of iwi, or native Hawaiian remains, has led to controversy at one particular site.

At least two archaeologists have differing estimates of the number of iwi at the six-acre Ward Village Shops site, where General Growth Properties plans a Whole Foods Market, parking garage, retail shops and 17-story rental apartment.

The count so far by Cultural Surveys Hawaii, hired by General Growth, is at more than 50 sets of iwi, with more updates to come as it continues to monitor the site.

Thomas Dye, president of the Society for Hawaiian Archaeology, meanwhile, stands by his professional estimate of as many as 335 remains.

The state historic preservation division in June ordered General Growth to redesign its project in order to preserve the iwi in place.

DOCUMENTED IWI

Thousands of iwi have been found over the past 20 years in greater Kakaako.

» Honuakaha Smallpox Cemetery, 1,000 burials (South Street and Quinn Lane)
» Honuakaha (545 Queen St.), 179-389 burials
» State Office Building (southeast corner, Punchbowl and Halekauwila streets), 6 burials
» Mother Waldron Park (Cooke and Halekauwila streets), 17 burials
» Koolani (1189 Waimanu Street), 18 burials
» Queen Street extension, 30 burials
» Ward Village Shops site, 53, to date
Source: Archaeological Inventory Survey Report for the Victoria Ward Village Shops Project, May 2006

GREATER KAKAAKO

Native Hawaiian burials are scattered throughout greater Kakaako, according to archeological reports written over the last 20 years.

Many Hawaiians used the Kewalo region for fishpond farming, salt making, wetland agriculture and human burials, according to Cultural Surveys Hawaii, which did several reports on the area.

Burials have been documented from beneath the State Office Building at Punchbowl and Halekauwila streets to Mother Waldron Park and the newest luxury condo towers fronting Ala Moana Boulevard.

The most significant archaeological find was the 1853 Honuakaha Cemetery at South Street and Quinn Lane, where more than 1,000 human burials resulting from a cholera epidemic were discovered.

Honuakaha, an affordable rental for seniors next to the historic Royal Brewery, also was the site for several hundred iwi. Mother Waldron Park is home to 17, which were discovered around the area and reinterred there.

At the site of what is now Koolani, the luxury high-rise condo by Crescent Heights, there were 18 burials, as well as a human mandible found on the site of the other luxury high-rise, the Hokua at 1288 Ala Moana Blvd.

Beneath the Queen Street extension project, past archaeological reports found up to 30 burials.

Naone-Salvador would support preserving burials in place within the development.

"Given the history of this area, they were buried there for a reason," she said. "I feel it would be disrespectful if they were removed. I believe that developers can always change their plans and be sensitive to the iwi within their projects. If these ancestors are treated with dignity and respect, the development will be pono (appropriate)."

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http://honoluluadvertiser.com/apps/pbcs.dll/article?AID=/20070812/OPINION03/708120311/1110/OPINION03
Honolulu Advertiser, Sunday, August 12, 2007
COMMENTARY

Giving historic preservation due priority

By William Aila Jr. and Thomas Dye

The staffing ills at the State Historic Preservation Division, the agency charged with protecting Hawai'i's historic sites and burials, command headlines. SHPD has lost 21 employees over the past two years, most of them professionals trained to balance development interests with protection of the state's historic legacy and the rights of Hawaiians whose ancestors are buried in unmarked graves. Without them, SHPD is in shambles.

We represent Hawai'i's historic preservation community. We are Hawaiians and professional archaeologists whose interest in these issues runs deep. We take seriously the state's declaration that "it is in the public interest to engage in a comprehensive program of historic preservation at all levels of government to promote the use and conservation of such property for the education, inspiration, pleasure and enrichment of its citizens."

The Historic Preservation Division plays an important role in our community. When it fails, historic preservation suffers. A good example is the Ward Villages project on Auahi Street, a development that many Hawai'i residents welcome for the organic Whole Foods market it will bring.

Auahi Street is fully developed. The popular stores there draw thousands of customers daily. Most people don't realize that Auahi Street follows the back side of a former beach. This is where traditional Hawaiians chose to spend their days and nights, where they cooked their food and ate their meals, raised their families, and buried their dead. It is the kind of place archaeological remains of Hawaiian settlement are likely to be found underground.

When a project such as Ward Villages is proposed, the developer must apply for permits from the county or other agencies. These permitting agencies are required by law to send applications to the Historic Preservation Division for review. In the case of Ward Villages, professional staff at SHPD should have known that more than 30 unmarked graves were found when Queen Street was extended at the mauka side of the property and that multiple sets of human remains were found in adjacent properties. They should have attached conditions to the Ward Villages permits that specified how historic sites and unmarked graves would be identified and treated.

MISSING A CRUCIAL STEP

These conditions should have started an historic preservation review process that works well in the vast majority of cases where it is implemented properly.

Because of the staffing crisis at SHPD, this crucial first step was never taken. The historic sites and unmarked graves at Ward Villages were stripped of their most important layer of protection. They were left vulnerable to disturbance and destruction by development.

To its credit, the developer hired an archaeological firm. But archaeologists had to work quickly alongside demolition and construction crews. Using a backhoe, they made a unique find of a Hawaiian habitation site. At the urging of the O'ahu Island Burial Council, they expanded the search for human remains along the back beach. The finds were astounding. In a search area that covered 3 percent of the old beach, archaeologists found 11 sets of human remains.

Large sums of money invested in design and construction were now at risk. Archaeologists rushed to submit a report of their findings. SHPD's review sanctions destruction of most of the unique traditional Hawaiian habitation site. Without comment, SHPD didn't require the data recovery investigations specified by its administrative rule. Worse, no one estimated how many sets of human remains might be found.

If the bones of 11 individuals were found under only 3 percent of the beach, how many were left in the remaining 97 percent? A moment's reflection and a bit of math indicate that there are likely to be hundreds of individuals buried there.

As required by state law, SHPD forwarded the report to the O'ahu Island Burial Council. The council members, dedicated individuals who volunteer to care for the ancestors, had to decide whether to preserve in place or relocate the 11 sets of remains. A key criterion for preserving burials in place is whether they constitute a concentration of burials. Yet, nobody mentioned that the 11 sets were likely a fraction of an extensive burial ground. The council voted 6-4 to relocate the remains.

MORE REMAINS FOUND

Unsurprisingly, archaeological excavations to remove the remains revealed dozens of additional individuals. Construction activities uncovered more bones, some crushed by heavy equipment working on site.

At last count, the bones of 53 individuals had been found. All of these traditional Hawaiian remains, now technically classified as "inadvertently discovered," supposedly were no longer the kuleana of the O'ahu Island Burial Council.

Instead, their fate was placed in the hands of bureaucrats at SHPD. Burial council members complained that they would have acted differently if they had suspected there were so many burials on the property. Alleging serious missteps in the historic preservation process, a recognized cultural descendent of the individuals buried at the property filed suit against the state and the developer.

The Society for Hawaiian Archaeology began an investigation of the regulatory process. And SHPD, against the wishes of a developer who had already invested millions of dollars in project design and construction, ordered that the burials remain in place and that the project be redesigned to avoid them.

If SHPD had required archaeological investigations to precede construction, then the presence of burials and a unique habitation site need not have been a crisis for the developer, who could have planned accordingly. And if SHPD had provided the professional opinions that would have let the burial council make a fully informed decision, then they could have helped the developer come up with a workable plan that respected the wishes of descendants and the sanctity of the graves.

Enough already. It is time for the Lingle administration to correct the management issues plaguing the Historic Preservation Division without further delay, and to bring the staff there up to full strength with dedicated, qualified professionals.

Historic preservation works. Hawai'i's people, its developers, and its historic preservation community need the Lingle administration to follow the state's mandate and work with us to preserve Hawai'i's heritage.

William Aila Jr. is a board member of Hui Malama I Na Kupuna O Hawai'i Nei. Thomas Dye is president of the Society for Hawaiian Archaeology. They wrote this commentary for The Advertiser.

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http://www.honoluluadvertiser.com/apps/pbcs.dll/article?AID=/20070819/OPINION02/708190303/1108
Honolulu Advertiser, Sunday, August 19, 2007
Letters to the Editor

WARD VILLAGES
BURIAL COUNCIL WAS TOLD OF EXTENSIVE BURIALS

It is appalling that certain O'ahu Island Burial Council members claim they did not know of the extensive burials at the Ward Villages project and shocking to hear that they are suddenly taking a different path.

Each member of the council was in receipt of testimony I sent to them before the vote to relocate the 11 sets of remains.

The testimony detailed the number of burials that were located and disturbed in the Honolulu area alone. I reiterated that many more discoveries at the Ward project was more than a guarantee.

The six disregarded the testimony of my 'ohana, who pressed for preservation in place.

Only four members asked for more surveys and for the council to hold up their vote until more testing could be done. These were the four members who voted to preserve the remains in place.

While there is an urgency to reform the State Historic Preservation Division and to fill positions with qualified personnel, in the same stroke replace the six council members who have forgotten their kuleana and are now trying to backpedal.

Paulette Ka'anohi Kaleikini
Wai'anae

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http://starbulletin.com/2007/08/30/business/story01.html
Honolulu Star-Bulletin, August 30, 2007

Developer sees OK to build at Ward site

By Nina Wu

The path has been cleared for the construction of the planned Whole Foods Market store in Kakaako, although controversy continues to brew over how the native Hawaiian remains there have been handled.

"We're very happy to be able to move forward with construction," said Jan Yakota, General Growth Properties' vice president of development in Hawaii.

Construction will proceed with the parking garage and the Whole Foods Market at the Ward Village Shops site, she said, which is expected to be completed by late 2008.

General Growth, meanwhile, is reviewing its options for the Ewa side of the construction site, near the current Pier 1 Imports store, where a 17-story rental tower was planned.

Laura Thielen, interim chair of the Department of Land and Natural Resources, helped pave the way for continued work on the store site by authorizing the relocation of 10 burials there, at the request of General Growth.

General Growth's estimated $150 million project is expected to include a 67,000-square-foot Whole Foods Market, parking garage, residential tower and additional retail shops on a 6-acre site bound by Auahi, Kamakee and Queen Streets.

The current count of the remains, meanwhile, has grown to 55, with the latest discovery identified as an infant.

The Native Hawaiian Legal Corp. and Paulette Kaleikini, a recognized cultural descendant of some of the area's in a suit filed by the Native Hawaiian Legal Corp. against the state and General Growth last year, when the number of remains known on the site was 11.

For Kaleikini, it was a turnaround from June, when historic division administrator Melanie Chinen told General Growth to redesign its project to preserve 30 burials in place. A few days later, Chinen also requested additional testing at the Whole Foods site because it was beginning to resemble the Ewa side.

Two weeks ago, Thielen authorized the removal of 10 burials from the Whole Foods site, reasoning that they were not associated with a concentration of burials, important individuals or within a context of historic properties.

Consideration was also given to the lack of consensus among recognized cultural descendants and the current stage of the development.

Most of these burials, according to General Growth in its Aug. 15 letter, were in extremely poor condition with evidence of extensive disturbance from previous construction.

Before the site was cleared, it was home to a retail center housing Starbucks, Jamba Juice and others, as well as an office building and warehouse.

Kaleikini disagreed with the conclusions drawn by Thielen about the site's historical context. "Native Hawaiians regard all aina where iwi kupuna are found as a sacred ground and it cradles the history of our ohana and our people," she said. "For native Hawaiians, a burial ground is a historic property." Also, she said if the remains were fragmented because of previous construction, they should have been left in place to prevent further damage and separation. "This is hewa (wrong)," said Kaleikini. "The disinterment of the iwi may be separating an ohana. Now the spirits will be looking for their missing ohana member. This is hewa."

Thomas Dye, president of the Society of Hawaiian Archaeology, in July said his professional estimate of burials at the site was closer to 335, which would mean there is a concentration of burials there.

Alan Murakami, litigation director of the Native Hawaiian Legal Corp., said this is why a comprehensive study must be done before the start of construction, planning or design. "Requirements for a study should have been a demand before anything was done," said Murakami. "We're so concerned that these situations not be thrust upon the descendants when it's entirely avoidable."

Thielen declined to comment due to the pending litigation.

The controversy comes as the state agency comes under growing scrutiny.

A new coalition, calling itself the Friends of the State Historic Preservation Division, formed earlier this month to urge Gov. Linda Lingle to remedy the state agency with a competent set of dedicated managers.

With more than 20 staff members having left the division since 2004, the coalition said the agency's backlog of permit applications has spiraled into the hundreds.

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http://starbulletin.com/2007/09/14/business/story01.html
Honolulu Star-Bulletin, September 14, 2007

More legal roadblocks for Ward Whole Foods

By Nina Wu

Work on the planned Whole Foods Market store in Kakaako has stopped again after the discovery of still more remains at the construction site, bringing the count to 58.

The Native Hawaiian Legal Corp., meanwhile, filed a motion seeking a temporary restraining order yesterday on behalf of cultural descendant Paulette Kaleikini to stop the removal of any more human remains from the redevelopment site.

In the motion, NHLC attorney Moses Haia asks that, in light of the additional finds, construction be halted at the entire Ward Village redevelopment site.

General Growth Properties Inc. is building a 67,000-square-foot Whole Foods Market, 17-story residential tower, parking garage and retail shops on a 6-acre site bound by Auahi, Kamakee and Queen streets.

The controversy over the handling of the iwi, or native Hawaiian remains, found at the Ward site has grown more heated as the count has grown from the first 11 to 58. General Growth's $150 million project faces mounting costs with the numerous delays. The state Historic Preservation Division, meanwhile, has fallen under more scrutiny by a new coalition that says it is understaffed and underfunded.

Kaleikini feels that the testing has gone on long enough. "How many iwi kupuna do they need to discover before it's determined that this is a graveyard of native Hawaiians?" she said. "This is a historic property and it is protected by the state law... The state must step in and stop this desecration of our iwi kupuna."

In August, Laura Thielen, interim chair of the Department of Land and Natural Resources, authorized the removal of 10 remains beneath the planned Whole Foods store.

Debate centers around whether the burials constitute a concentration, or historic site -- a point on which the state has flip-flopped between June and August.

Thomas Dye, president of the Society of Hawaiian Archeology stands by his estimate of as many as 335 remains at the site, which would make it a historic burial site. His professional opinion has been submitted with this latest motion.

Thielen would be responsible for determining the fate of the additional three sets of remains recently uncovered. Thielen declined to comment due to the pending litigation.

Jan Yokota, General Growth's vice president of development, said the company has been following procedures by halting work and informing the state of every new discovery, and then waiting for further instruction.

The latest motion by NHLC alleges that the iwi will be harmed by further activity and that General Growth's archaeologist already admitted damage to remains through handling.

In a separate motion filed earlier in February, Kaleikini challenged the state's authorization of the disinterment of 11 sets of iwi. A motion seeking summary judgment on that challenge is scheduled to be heard on Sept. 28.

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http://www.honoluluadvertiser.com/apps/pbcs.dll/article?AID=/20071024/NEWS23/710240417/1173/NEWS23
Honolulu Advertiser, Wednesday, October 24, 2007

More Native Hawaiian bones unearthed at site

By Eloise Aguiar

More ancient Hawaiian remains were discovered at the General Growth Properties Ward Village Shops construction site and the state has decided the landowner/developer must remove the iwi and re-inter them at a later date.

There have been 63 finds since the project began in 2005. Nine sets of remains were unearthed recently and of them, seven were determined to be of Hawaiian ethnicity. No determination could be made on the other two, according to a letter written by Melanie Chinen, administrator for the state Historic Preservation Division.

The Oct. 12 letter to Jan Yokota, vice president of General Growth, said the remains could be relocated to the burial preserve located within the diamondhead area of the project.

"GGP is provided with the authority to conduct the immediate disinterment of these burials and should curate all burials on site with those previously disinterred," Chinen wrote.

The Historic Preservation Division operates under the Department of Land and Natural Resources. The division is charged with preserving and maintaining cultural sites, including the management of burial sites more than 50 years old. The individual Island Burial Councils work with the division to address concerns relating to Hawaiian burial sites.

BONES IN COLD STORAGE

Yokota said General Growth removed the iwi most recently found and is temporarily holding them in an air-conditioned trailer at the construction site. The remains will be re-interred once the project is completed, Yokota said.

"We have worked with descendants' families and have agreed on certain areas on site," Yokota said.

The letter grants permission for the removal of 11 total iwi discoveries, two of which — Nos. 55 and 56 — will be the subject of a Circuit Court hearing today.

Moses Haia, attorney for Paulette Kaanohiokalani Kaleikini, a descendant of the two found remains, seeks to have a judge stop the removal and relocation of those two sets of iwi.

Haia said the recent discovery of more remains strengthens their case because it indicates a greater concentration of iwi in the vicinity of Nos. 55 and 56 and merits "greater consideration for preservation in place."

GARAGE BUILT FIRST

The $100 million project includes a Whole Foods Market, a 17-story rental apartment building, assorted retail shops and a parking garage at the diamondhead end of Auahi Street. But General Growth is only working on the parking garage and the Whole Foods building now, Yokota said.

The first structures, on 6 acres of land, are expected to be completed next year, with Whole Foods opening by late 2008, she said.

The recent inadvertent discovery included whole skeletal remains and individual iwi, said Laura Thielen, director of the state Department of Land and Natural Resources. The nine new finds — in various sites — were discovered when General Growth's consultant was conducting additional archeological work as a result of a previous discovery, Thielen said.

Several factors played into the decision to relocate the latest finds of iwi, she said. They include the law, which spells out specific criteria including whether a large concentration of iwi is in a small area; a previous decision by the O'ahu Island Burial Council to relocate other remains found on the construction site; and the lack of a consensus from the descendants about whether to remove or keep the iwi in place, Thielen said.

Thielen, who took charge of the DLNR less than three months ago, said initial surveys indicated that there would be few burials in the area.

"On the one hand there's archaeologist saying no we hadn't anticipated having an undue number," she said. "On the other hand there's people now saying, this is something that should have been known."

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http://starbulletin.com/2007/10/26/business/story02.html
Honolulu Star-Bulletin, October 26, 2007

Court hears final arguments in Ward iwi dispute
A group is seeking to halt construction of the Kakaako Whole Foods

By Nina Wu

Both sides in the long-running dispute over how to handle native Hawaiian remains found at the Ward Village Shops redevelopment project are slated to wrap up their case today before state Circuit Judge Glenn Kim.

The Native Hawaiian Legal Corp. is seeking a halt to construction and any further disinterments of the remains, or iwi, at the 6-acre site where General Growth Properties is building a $150 million mixed-use project that is to be anchored by a Whole Foods Market store.

Closing statements are being delivered this morning after two days of testimony, but Judge Kim said he won't likely render a decision until next week.

"We are asking the judge to stop the project now," said cultural descendant Paulette Kaleikini, the plaintiff in the case. "Instead of making decisions for 10 burials at time, they should have done a complete survey for the whole project area before starting any construction."

She fears that families that were buried together will be separated by removal -- and says that her fear that piles would be driven into some of the iwi has indeed materialized.

Most of the testimony yesterday pertained to the portion of the project where the Whole Foods store is being built, given that the state Historic Preservation Division recently authorized the removal of another 10 burials there. The current count of iwi discovered at the site is at 64. Construction of Whole Foods store continued yesterday as the court hearings proceeded.

Witnesses have included Department of Land and Natural Resources director Laura Thielen, as well as Thomas Dye, president of the Society for Hawaiian Archaeology and Kaleikini.

Dye went on record stating that his professional estimate of the number of burials at the site was at 335, based on his review of documents.

That number should have been presented to the Oahu Island Burial Council last fall, he said in an earlier interview, rather than the tally of 11 actually presented before the council voted for removal and relocation.

All other burial discoveries have since fallen under the jurisdiction of the Historic Preservation Division, part of the Department of Land and Natural Resources.

Vince Kanemoto, representing the state, cross-examined Dye with an exhaustive list of questions, ranging from SHA's opinion of Melanie Chinen, the preservation division's administrator, to his qualifications as an expert on historic preservation, the definitions of a burial site, a concentration and the methodology for determining the ethnicity of human remains.

John Yamano, attorney for General Growth, said there have been numerous delays in the project. The motion before the court is one of several that have sought to stop construction -- but to date none have been granted.

Whenever new sets of remains are discovered, developers are required by law to inform the state and await directions on what to do with them. But the state must respond within 24 to 48 hours.

"General Growth has complied with every rule, regulation and statue" he said. "We've worked very closely with SHPD as well as their descendants, including the plaintiff."

He said this included giving the state additional time to respond in regards to new discoveries.

"General Growth has tried to be very responsible with the iwi," he said.

He said that Dye admitted in testimony he has never set foot on the project, but made his analysis based on three reports.

Judge Kim had his own set of questions for Dye on the determination of a "burial site" and "concentration of burials" stating: "The definitions are troublesome in and of themselves, and they require interpretation."

A skeletal remain, for example, can include anything from the tip of a human finger to a complete, intact set of bones. Historic property means any area over 50 years old.

Kaleikini said her great-grandfather's cousin, Ka'aua, held the land grant for the property, and that she is one of several family members chosen to take care of the iwi kupuna.

She has long held the position that iwi should first and foremost be preserved in place, unless natural elements -- like erosion -- warrant relocation. Construction is not a natural cause for disinterment.

The disinterment of iwi at the site has caused harm to her and her family, she said.

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http://honoluluadvertiser.com/apps/pbcs.dll/article?AID=/20071028/NEWS01/710280361
Honolulu Advertiser, October 28, 2007

Honolulu building site a virtual graveyard

By Kevin Dayton
Advertiser Big Island Bureau

Data collected from the Ward Villages construction site in Kaka'ako suggest there may be 335 individuals buried there, a calculation that should have been included in archaeological reports accepted by the state, according to a review by a panel of outside archaeologists.

The three-member panel of members of the Society for Hawaiian Archaeology said the state Historic Preservation Division demonstrated "serious instances of nonfeasance" in failing to demand further investigation of the site, and also failed to demand information necessary to determine how widespread the burials were within the area to be affected by construction.

Tim Lee, administrative assistant to state Historic Preservation Division Administrator Melanie Chinen, said the archeological site survey done last year by Cultural Surveys Hawai'i Inc. met all requirements under state law, and said his agency will not be demanding additional survey work. "Construction has already started, so the survey is done. We cannot have concurrent survey and construction. That would be very difficult," Lee said. "Anyone can critique in hindsight. It's a matter of opinion."

The Society for Hawaiian Archaeology is a professional group of more than 200 archaeologists and others from across the state. Its members include contract archaeologist who survey sites for artifacts before construction begins on major Hawai'i developments.

Reports of the dozens of burials found at the site of the $100 million Ward Villages project have stirred concerns among some Native Hawaiians and archaeologists.

The finished project will include a Whole Foods Market, a 17-story condominium building, retail shops and a parking garage at the diamondhead end of Auahi Street.

Jan Yokota, vice president of developer General Growth, declined comment on the society report in an e-mail, saying she had not read it.

The Historic Preservation Division operates under the Department of Land and Natural Resources, and is responsible for preserving and maintaining cultural sites including management of burial sites more than 50 years old.

MORE REMAINS FOUND

Eleven sets of remains were noted during a 2006 archaeological survey of the site, with most of those found in the 'ewa-makai and diamondhead-makai sections of the six-acre property.

Work was halted for a time, but resumed after the O'ahu Island Burial Council voted in September 2006 to allow the developer to move those 11 remains.

When archaeologists working for the developer went to remove some of the initial 11 sets of remains, or iwi, earlier this year, another 29 burials were discovered.

More burials were found later in June and reported to the state, and still more burials found later this year, bringing the count of burials found to 64. Some of those may include more than one individual set of remains, and it isn't clear how many individuals' bones have been found.

In June, Historic Preservation Division Administrator Chinen told General Growth to leave 30 sets of remains in place, and to redesign the 17-story tower planned for the 'ewa-makai portion of the property to avoid the burials. Historic Preservation authorized the developer to remove another 27 sets of remains found on the Whole Foods portion of the project and hold them for reinterment later.

The society's panel contends that the O'ahu Island Burial Council should be allowed to decide what to do with burials found at the diamondhead end of the project, which includes the Whole Foods Market now under construction.

Media accounts of the discoveries prompted the Society for Hawaiian Archaeology to review the site survey report and the state response to that survey, said Tom Dye, president of the society and one of the three panel members who reviewed the archeological site survey.

The society panel review found that the survey did not identify the dimensions of a burial site discovered beneath a cultural deposit, and faulted the state for failing to demand that information be included in the original survey.

The society report found that the archaeological survey tested 3.28 percent of the land with beach sand under it, which are areas where burials might reasonably be expected.

Since 11 burials were found in that sample, extrapolating to the rest of the site suggests that there are likely 335 individuals buried on the property, according to the society report.

SURVEY WORK COMPLETE

There was enough information in the inventory survey report to be reasonably confident that many more sets of human remains were buried on the property, and this information should have been clearly communicated to the O'ahu Island Burial Council before it voted to move the first 11 sets, according to the Sept. 28 letter outlining the society archaeologists' review.

Burials "might reasonably be expected" in any part of 2.6 acres of the property with beach sand below it, and archaeological excavations should be done in any area where construction will disturb the buried beach sand, according to the panel.

Lee said the preservation division will not require additional survey work. "We're not going to withdraw the fact that it's an accepted inventory," he said. "It's an accepted inventory. It's done."

Hallett Hammatt, principal investigator for Cultural Surveys Hawai'i, did not respond to a request for an interview on the society's report.

For the past year the Society for Hawaiian Archaeology has been publicly critical of the historic preservation division, warning that staff turnover, vacancies in critical archaeological and cultural positions and other problems have undermined the functioning of the agency.

Chinen has alleged that the Society for Hawaiian Archaeology is trying to discredit and weaken her program. Chinen was not available for comment on this story.

On Oct. 20 at the society's annual conference in Keauhou, members voted unanimously to endorse a letter from former preservation division archaeology branch chief Ross Cordy blaming Chinen for many of the agency's problems and calling for her removal. Three of about 60 members present at the meeting abstained from the vote.

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http://starbulletin.com/2007/11/01/business/story01.html
Honolulu Star-Bulletin, November 1, 2007

Ward construction cleared
Work can continue on a Whole Foods while a lawsuit proceeds on the iwi found there

By Nina Wu

Circuit Judge Glenn Kim yesterday denied a motion seeking to halt construction at the Ward Village Shops redevelopment site while a lawsuit proceeds over the state's handling of native Hawaiian remains there.

The ruling means that construction of the 67,000-square-foot Whole Foods Market store can continue as planned, as long as the state approves the removal of any additional remains, called iwi, discovered there.

The state's count of remains at the 6-acre Kakaako construction site is now 64.

The Native Hawaiian Legal Corp., acting on behalf of cultural descendant Paulette Kaleikini, had been trying to stop the further removal of iwi at the site, as well as the construction itself, pending resolution of the lawsuit. A trial date has yet to be set in the case.

"This is a sad day for what I believe the intent of (the law) was," said Moses Haia, attorney for the Legal Corp. "This is a sad day for native Hawaiian remains and the people that look to it as an obligation to protect and preserve those remains with the dignity and respect that they're due. ... The way I see this decision is that it clears the way for the same kinds of decisions in the future."

The state Historic Preservation Division has asked developer General Growth Properties to redesign its residential tower on the Ewa side of the site, near the existing Pier 1 Imports, due to about 30 iwi that have been discovered there. But so far, it has given the developer the green light to remove and rebury all other iwi discovered on the Diamond Head side of the site, where the Whole Foods store is under construction.

General Growth expects to complete its $150 million project, which is to include a 17-story residential tower, parking garage, Whole Foods Market and retail shops, in late 2008.

"We're pleased with the decision," said John Yamano, General Growth's attorney from McCorriston Miller Mukai MacKinnon LLP. "The court clearly worked hard in addressing all of the issues, all of the facts, and all of the law."

Jan Yokota, a vice president for General Growth, said: "We recognize it has been a difficult situation. Not all the families will agree with the recommendations, but we do respect those differences, and will continue to work closely with all the recognized cultural descendants."

General Growth is considering various options for the residential tower, she said, and intends to work with the cultural descendants.

Vince Kanemoto, the attorney representing the state, said he was pleased with the judge's ruling. "The ruling clearly indicates that SHPD has complied with the law and has done so in a respectful manner regarding the iwi that are the subject of this dispute," he said.

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http://www.honoluluadvertiser.com/apps/pbcs.dll/article?AID=/20071108/OPINION02/711080304/1108
Honolulu Advertiser, November 8, 2007

PROPER BURIAL
LET VOTERS DECIDE ON HAWAIIAN REMAINS

It is not a new story that new construction has unearthed Hawaiian burial remains. The 335 possible remains buried at the Ward Villages' Kaka'ako site is a huge number compared to the 11 remains first found, then another 29, and more after that.

The Society of Hawaiian Archaeology is pointing fingers at the state Historic Preservation Division, which in turn adheres to an outdated state law concerning what we do with rightfully buried Hawaiians.

Although the archaeological survey is wrong, halting further construction on the $100 million Ward Villages until decisions can be made on what to do with all of the remains seems out of the question.

What is interesting is that although several remains were found on several different occasions, Historic Preservation Division Administrator Melanie Chinen had the contractors build around them.

I believe the citizens of the state should have the right to vote on what to do with these remains.

I believe these remains deserve a proper burial, just as you and I would want.

Leah Michaels
Honolulu

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http://www.honoluluadvertiser.com/apps/pbcs.dll/article?AID=/20071111/OPINION01/711110336/1105/OPINION01
Honolulu Advertiser, Sunday, November 11, 2007

Programs protecting burials, treasures need review

In the next few months, lawmakers and other community leaders need to do some serious thinking about the state's historic preservation programs. The difficulty in dealing with Hawaiian burials unearthed in the Ward Villages construction site in Kaka'ako brings that need most sharply to mind.

In recent weeks, a panel of archaeologists reported data indicating that 335 people may have been buried on the site. That is hundreds more than was believed at the outset, when that information could have guided development plans.

The shortage of experienced staff in the State Historic Preservation Division, which has oversight of burial law, certainly added to the disorderly way burials were encountered: It would have been far better to anticipate them. But even under the best of staffing circumstances, the respectful handling of burials under the law is especially complicated in urban Honolulu, where Hawaiians were buried traditionally in unmarked and undocumented locations, usually near their dwellings.

The intent of the law is to give families who may be descendants some say in how their ancestors' remains are treated. The idea is that these families deserve the same consideration given to those whose forbears are buried in marked cemeteries, which are not governed by the same burial law. For instance, Kawaiaha'o Church is now consulting with families on plans to reinter some of its dead before building its new church center, a process made easier by the records that are available.

By contrast, unmarked Hawaiian burials by law involve island burial councils, which help developers find possible descendants for consultation on a plan. Unfortunately, the councils have grown more contentious than helpful in some cases. And as some of the members with institutional memory have grown frustrated and left, too many unfilled seats have made achieving the quorum for meetings a problem, causing delays.

On O'ahu, all it takes to produce a sense of dread is reflecting back on the Ward and Wal-Mart burial conflicts and then thinking ahead to all the urban redevelopment in the works. Will consultation with descendants deteriorate into serial battles that serve nobody's interest?

Not every case is a failure, of course. Hawaiian cultural consultant Dawn Chang, for example, pointed out that on Kaua'i and elsewhere, the burial councils have worked closely with families and developers to plan "preservation areas" on project sites. These make it easier to treat the inevitable inadvertent burial discoveries with dignity, by providing the most ideal spot for reinterment in advance.

That proactive approach may be something that could become more standard practice through a change in the burial law.

It's just one idea that could be discussed in an informational briefing that burial program advocates are requesting before the next Legislature convenes. That would be wise. With the anticipated redevelopment of much of urban Honolulu — the mass-transit project being the foremost example — these problems can't be left festering. Beyond the burials, there are also concerns about whether there's enough oversight of other historic treasures, including buildings and artifacts.

State Sen. Jill Tokuda, D-24th (Kailua, Kane'ohe), who will chair the new Agriculture and Hawaiian Affairs Committee, said there's great interest in the Senate in discussing many broad historic preservation issues — including the results of a state-funded work group convened a year ago to find solutions.

Some solutions should focus on improving oversight of how laws are carried out; others might increase funding for the laborious research required to do a responsible job.

Finally, there may be simpler, more practical ways of tapping traditional wisdom and giving people a voice in how remains and cultural treasures are protected. That, after all, is why these laws are on the books.


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(6) COMPARING BAD DISPUTE RESOLUTION AGAINST GOOD DISPUTE RESOLUTION: ALI'I PARKWAY IN KONA VS. ALLURE WAIKIKI CONDO. LAHAINA BYPASS INQUIRY NOW UNDERWAY; AFRICAN BURIAL GROUND IN MANHATTAN
** Note: A new webpage was created on July 20, 2007 about the conflict between wishes to preserve ancient burials vs. wishes to construct new highways or buildings. See: "Hawaiian Bones -- Rites For the Dead vs. Rights Of the Living" at
http://www.angelfire.com/planet/big60/HawaiianBonesRitesRights.html

http://www.westhawaiitoday.com/articles/2007/07/27/local/local02.txt
West Hawaii Today (Kona), July 27, 2007

Where's the road?
$6 million spent on Alii Parkway project, without an inch of road built

by Jim Quirk

HILO -- To date, $6.3 million has been spent on Kona's Alii Parkway project, yet the road is no more than an idea on paper.

And there may be no groundbreaking in the foreseeable future, despite regular political promises otherwise.

For decades, Hawaii County has planned the Alii Parkway project with the notion it would relieve traffic congestion in West Hawaii.

According to data from county Managing Director Dixie Kaetsu, $4.826 million in federal dollars, $887,990 in county funds and $570,000 in private funds have been spent over the years toward land acquisition, planning, design and archaeological studies related to the project, which has been in the works since the 1960s.

Of the $6.3 million, Kaetsu said $1.5 million has been spent on archaeological research, $1.3 million on land acquisition, $220,000 on planning and about $3.3 million on design work. It was faulty archaeological work, mapping performed by consultants, that failed to locate properly a known burial site in the highway corridor.

The project was set to move forward in 2004 but was halted when the burial was "rediscovered" in an area where the road was planned.

The county redesigned its plans to account for the burial, which are tucked inside of a lava tube, by including a small bridge over the site.

The decision of what happens next rests with the Hawaii Island Burial Council. It is scheduled to make a decision on whether it approves of the county's redesign in August. Some Burial Council members, however, have already made it clear they do not and will not approve of the county's redesign.

Kaetsu said she's hopeful that, should the Burial Council give a negative recommendation on the county's proposed mitigation plan, the state Historic Preservation Division -- which has the final say -- still approves the project.

Mayor Harry Kim recently said the state always goes by recommendations tendered by Hawaii's burial councils. Although Kaetsu said it would be "unusual" for the state to disregard the Burial Council's recommendation, she's still hopeful the state goes against the norm should the Big Island's Burial Council say no to the plans.

"It is up to the state Historic Preservation Division," she said, adding the revised plans calls for "preserving in place" the ancient bones "like they said we had to."

The county still has no back-up plan should the redesign fail, Kaetsu said.

"We are exploring our options and looking at other possibilities," she said, adding "we still have faith" the redesign will meet the Burial Council's approval.

It is also unknown how much more money the county would have to spend on another redesign should it again be faced with a negative decision from the Burial Council and state, Kaetsu said.

Meanwhile, the status of the initial $2 million allotment in State Transportation Improvement Program funding the county was supposed to receive this fiscal year for the project remains in limbo because of the Burial Council situation.

The Hawaii Department of Transportation, which issues the federal STIP grants, pushed back the county's initial $2 million grant earmarked for the project to 2010 because of the Burial Council roadblock.

State DOT officials told Kim recently they'll work with the county to push the funds back up on the schedule should the Burial Council issue be resolved.

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http://starbulletin.com/2007/07/27/business/story03.html
Honolulu Star-Bulletin, July 27, 2007

Waikiki condo redesigns for remains
The developers of the Allure Waikiki sought input on preserving two iwi burial sites

By Nina Wu

What once was the Wave Waikiki, a fallow field and a bunch of dilapidated walkup apartments, will soon be home to Allure Waikiki, a 35-story luxury condominium.

But when two sets of iwi, or native Hawaiian burials, were discovered at the 2.2-acre development site for the upscale condo, what could have become a hurdle became a lesson in history -- and a slight redesign.

Chicago-based Fifield Cos. plans a condo tower offering 300 one-, two- and three-bedroom units, with an infinity-edged pool, outdoor spa and fitness center.

The units are priced at between $750,000 and $1.75 million.

Last summer, while preparing its archeological report, Fifield discovered two iwi at opposite ends of the construction site.

They went to the Oahu Island Burial Council, which approved a burial treatment plan, and will preserve both in place.

Paulette Kaleikini, whose family once lived at the site, said she was pleased with how the developer dealt with the iwi early on in the design process.

"We're satisfied," said Kaleikini, who visited the site several times with the development team. "They went ahead and redesigned the project to accommodate the kupuna. They're the first developer I know of that did something like that."

She said it could be a good lesson for future developers.

"Things can go smooth for them if they do the right thing," she said.

Executives from Fifield flew to Honolulu to attend burial council meetings, and working with architects, made a few design adjustments.

They also hired consultant Dawn Chang of Ku'iwalu to oversee the process.

One set of iwi will remain in place at the public park planned at the corner of Kalakaua Avenue and Ena Road, which will also offer native Hawaiian plants, a pond and a waterfall.

The iwi found at the site of the parking structure was more challenging. Fifield's team decided they would build a special encasement within the garage where no cars would park.

Several pillars were reconfigured so as not to disturb the iwi but to keep the structure intact.

David Jacobson, Fifield's vice president of sales and marketing, said it was important to take all the appropriate actions.

At the same time, the development team learned that before the Wave Waikiki nightclub, the site for Allure Waikiki was also a gathering place, home to fishponds, native Hawaiian families and musicians.

It was Fifield's first time going through such a process, even though it has built more than 50 high-rises worth $4 billion, from Las Vegas to Hallandale Beach, Fla.

Allure Waikiki is Fifield's first Hawaii project.

Fifield last year bought the lot for $21 million from Oaktree Capital Management LLC and is spending hundreds of millions on the project.

Despite the leveling residential real estate market, buyers were walking in the door when the sales office opened on June 30. To date, 56 units have been taken.

Most buyers are local, according to Jacobson, some of them migrating from neighboring condos, such as the Waipuna next door and Waikiki Landmark across the street. But there are also mainland and international buyers.

Allure Waikiki, designed by Architects Hawaii, will feature an open-style lobby, with a sixth-floor recreation deck. The tower will be surrounded by open, green space, according to Jacobson, and perhaps even a bocce ball court on the front lawn.

Down the line, Fifield plans a standalone restaurant, where the current sales office now sits. It will be upscale, like Roy's, according to Jacobson, though no operator has been chosen yet.

Construction of Allure Waikiki is expected to start in September, with completion in late 2009.

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http://www.mauinews.com/story.aspx?id=32813
The Maui News, August 2, 2007

Cultural finds hold up Lahaina bypass work

By CLAUDINE SAN NICOLAS

KAHULUI – Construction of the long-awaited Lahaina bypass has been delayed once again.

Transportation officials announced Wednesday the discovery of archaeological sites during recent field surveys in the project area has forced them to put off a previously planned groundbreaking and construction start this month.

“It’s very important that we respect these archaeological sites and ensure that testing is fully verified before we proceed,” said state Transportation Director Barry Fukunaga. “We’ll be working very closely with the Department of Land and Natural Resources to make certain that any disturbances are minimized before moving forward with the work.

“Having said that, we want to expedite the process in order to better serve the residents of Maui.”

Earlier this summer, the state Department of Transportation announced it had planned to hold groundbreaking in July and start construction in August. That was changed to late August to give officials time “to determine the function and assess the significance of at least two recently identified sites.”

The state Historic Preservation Division has recommended the Transportation Department conduct additional archaeological work to analyze sites that were not previously identified in an archaeological survey conducted 15 years ago.

“We have to balance the need to preserve our cultural resources versus expediting the relief of traffic congestion on Lahainaluna Road,” said Capt. Charles Hirata, the Maui Police Department’s Lahaina Patrol District commander who is filling in this week as the acting assistant chief.

Theo Morrison, executive director of Lahaina Bypass Now, a grass-roots group formed to lobby for improved roads in West Maui, said she remained optimistic that the Transportation Department would be able to start the bypass.

“We’re confident that they will proceed in a most sensitive and appropriate manner to resolve the situation,” Morrison said.

Residents in West Maui have been seeking relief for decades, particularly along Lahainaluna Road, which is often packed on school days. It is the only access road to three public schools – Princess Nahienaena Elementary, Lahaina Intermediate and Lahainaluna High School.

The first phase of the Lahaina bypass would provide a two-lane road running from Lahainaluna Road to an extension of Keawe Street, a road running through a new commercial district mauka of the Lahaina Cannery Mall. Maui County will complete the Keawe Street extension.

Described as the Lahaina mini-bypass, the new road is expected to alleviate traffic congestion along Lahainaluna Road and at the intersection with Honoapiilani Highway.

The bypass intersection with Lahainaluna Road will include an overpass and offgrade merge rather than a traffic signal.

A second phase of the Honoapiilani Highway Realignment Project will continue the two-lane roadway south toward Launiupoko to connect to the Honoapiilani Highway.

Future phases will run north from the Keawe Street connection around the Kaanapali Resort to Honokowai.

The Launiupoko segment still is in discussion, with state transportation officials in May reporting they were exploring the possibility of extending the southern end of the Lahaina bypass to the area of the old Olowalu Landfill.

On the delay in the first phase, transportation officials said they will wait for results of the additional archaeological review to determine appropriate mitigation measures. Once that information is available, the Transportation Department will determine whether construction can proceed as scheduled.

Transportation officials said Maui County and the Housing and Community Development Corporation of Hawaii have both been notified of the archaeological findings, since both have proposed projects in the affected area.

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http://www.mauinews.com/news/2007/10/8/02Laha1008.html
The Maui News, October 8, 2007

Lahaina bypass work on hold for assessment

By CLAUDINE SAN NICOLAS, Staff Writer

LAHAINA – Work on the first phase of the Lahaina bypass has been postponed indefinitely while a new archaeological study is conducted.

State Department of Transportation Director Barry Fukunaga asked the public "for its patience and understanding" while his agency completes a new archaeological assessment of two sites in the project area. Construction cannot begin until the assessment is completed.

In addition, transportation officials plan to consult with government agencies and affected Native Hawaiian families and cultural groups in the community about the study’s findings.

This summer, transportation officials announced that the long-awaited bypass would begin construction in late July, but the project was postponed when the state Department of Land and Natural Resources’ Historic Preservation Division recommended more archaeological work in the project area to identify sites that were not previously identified in a survey conducted 15 years ago.

Because of sensitive cultural issues, transportation officials will consult with the Native Hawaiian community, including cultural practitioners, groups, organizations and descendants of the original families associated with the project area.

"This consultation is important in determining the significance and appropriate treatment of the archaeological sites within Phase 1A and future phases," Fukunaga said. "The process will also influence how and when construction can proceed."

Following the archaeological assessment, a public informational meeting will be scheduled to discuss its findings and how it will affect the project’s schedule. No target date has been released for the beginning of the bypass’ construction.

For decades, West Maui residents have been seeking relief from congestion on Lahainaluna Road where traffic backs up onto Honoapiilani Highway.

The first phase of the Lahaina bypass features a two-lane road running from Lahainaluna Road to the future Keawe Street extension, which will be done by Maui County. The state’s Lahaina minibypass project contract is approximately $48 million for the first phase.

Future phases of the bypass project will continue the new two-lane roadway south toward Launiupoko and north toward Kapalua.

The first archaeological site, described as a remnant walled enclosure, was documented as part of archaeological sites during the early to mid-1990s and was included with the final supplemental environmental impact statement in 2002.

The Historic Preservation Division is requiring further investigation of the site to determine if any burials may be present. Initial testing conducted with the agricultural features of the remnant walled enclosure found no burials, state transportation officials said.

The second archaeological site is described as a large complex of agricultural terraces that lie within about 27 acres of state property.

Further investigation is required, however, to determine the limits of the archaeological site and its cultural significance. Of the 27 acres within state lands, fewer than 2 acres are located within planned construction areas.

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http://www.hawaiireporter.com/story.aspx?73d6ac9b-5cd2-491a-a94e-8f0a6bcc5a0b
Hawaii Reporter, October 18, 2007

African Burial Ground Strengthens Bond Between Citizens, Government

The uplifting saga of the African Burial Ground began on an uncertain note in 1991, when the U.S. General Services Administration’s construction of a federal office building in lower Manhattan collided with an unmarked Colonial-era cemetery for enslaved Africans.

Before they were reinterred near their original resting place in October 2003, the remains and artifacts of more than 400 17th and 18th Century Africans told an amazing story. Modern scientific testing revealed details about the hardships they faced, how they lived and died, about the traditions they brought to America, and the significant – and forgotten - contributions they made to our young nation.

On Oct. 5, I attended a ceremony where a memorial was unveiled that will forever commemorate and communicate the message of the African Burial Ground. As I stood at the site, taking in the grandeur of this monument and watching others do the same, it struck me that the burial ground is more than a place of history. It also exemplifies the covenant of trust that exists between government and citizen.

That is, while our first step was a stumble – no one intended to disturb this sacred ground back in 1991, after all – subsequent actions by GSA, the U.S. Interior Department, the U.S. Army Corps of Engineers and many others were a deliberate march forward intended to correct the historical record. That record omitted the role played by free and enslaved Africans in the building of New York and other cities along the East Coast. In short, we found truth by accident and reported it on purpose. This was a delicate situation that could easily have gone awry. And in truth, there were some tense moments.

In the end, however, the remains were returned to the burial ground in a solemn and dignified ceremony. President Bush declared the site a National Monument. And we have now completed the memorial designed by architect Rodney Leon. I would like to congratulate the many federal, state and local agencies, as well as many other parties, like the Schomburg Center in New York and Howard University in Washington, D.C., for their collaborative and constructive work on the project.

The recent ceremony in New York City was cause for celebration because it represented the fulfillment of a pledge that ensures this piece of our history is never again swept under by the passage of time and events. But we also celebrated an intangible achievement – a willingness to accept responsibility, to rethink previous perceptions, and to correct the record as necessary. In so doing, we have also strengthened the bond between Americans and their government.

Lurita Doan is Administrator of the U.S. General Services Administration


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(7) INTERNATIONAL REPATRIATION NEWS
On September 7, 2007 it was reported that some Maori from New Zealand were repatriating from the Field Museum in Chicago the severed head of one Maori and some bones of 13 other Maori which had been traded by Maori to Euro-Americans during the 1800s. There are many such severed Maori heads in other museums and private collections. This raises some interesting questions. If Maori themselves freely sold such heads and bones perhaps 200 years ago, do we now judge that the choices made by those indigenous people were wrong (by today's standards)? Do today's Maori repudiate the choices of their ancestors? Would there be anything legally or morally wrong if the museum decided to keep the head and even to display it publicly (as was formerly done)?

http://www.iht.com/articles/ap/2007/09/08/america/NA-GEN-US-Maori-Remains.php
International Herald Tribune [and many other venues for Associated Press]

Chicago museum to return tattooed head, bones to Maori of New Zealand

The Associated Press
Friday, September 7, 2007

CHICAGO: John Terrell considered the severed head of a New Zealand native an inappropriate display piece, so the then assistant Field Museum curator carefully lifted it from a glass case and placed it in storage away from public view.

More than 35 years after that bid to provide some semblance of dignity to the deceased, the disembodied Maori head — its face tattooed and hair intact — is being returned to New Zealand along with bones from at least 13 other individuals.

The repatriation makes The Field Museum one of the first major U.S. museums to return Maori remains, many of which Westerners collected when Maori offered mummified heads of deceased loved ones in a grisly exchange for guns and other goods.

Terrell and another official from the downtown Chicago natural history museum, which held the human remains for decades, were due to formally hand over their collection at a Monday ceremony in Wellington, the capital of the Pacific island nation.

"This is, in a sense, a very family funeral," Terrell, now the 65-year-old curator of Pacific anthropology at The Field Museum, said before accompanying the remains on a flight to New Zealand. "It's delicate. ... It's very emotional."

A Maori delegation arrived in Chicago this week to privately prepare the more than century-old remains for the journey to New Zealand, including by reciting traditional prayers over the remains in the vowel-laden language of the Maori — a Polynesian people who make up 15 percent of New Zealand's 4 million population.

"It was speaking to the ancestors as if they were alive saying, 'We're here to take care of you, to take you home,'" explained Arapata Hakiwai, one of the Maori who came to Chicago. Hakiwai also is an official at New Zealand's national museum in Wellington, where the remains will be held in a restricted, specially consecrated area out of public view.

Maori activists have urged museums worldwide for years to relinquish such human relics, saying it is a matter of showing respect to the dead and to the Maori.

Hakiwai said museums outside New Zealand were under a moral, if not a legal obligation to return the remains.

"The question is — is it appropriate for them to hold native remains?" he said. "I don't think it is."

The haunting quality of the well-preserved heads, known as "mokomokai," once made them highly prized by Europeans.

Until the 1800s, many Maori mummified the heads of deceased loved ones by drying them, then kept them at home; some have their eyes opened and lips drawn back forming a macabre grin, their faces covered in tattoos. As contact with outsiders increased, some Maori offered them in trade.

The Field Museum's head, purchased in 1958 from a private collector, was likely first obtained in this lucrative if chilling manner, Terrell said. The museum bought the bones in 1893 from a scientific supply house in New York and its researchers once used them to compare the features of different indigenous peoples.

Museums do not give up such artifacts lightly, Terrell said. "Setting precedents is always an issue ... and anyone knocking on the door and saying, 'Give it all back!' can get the cold shoulder indeed," he said.

There was sympathy among Field Museum staff when Maori first requested the return of the ancestral remains — not least of all from Terrell, who studied in New Zealand as a young man and developed a fondness for its indigenous culture.

But in giving away even a select few of its some 25 million artifacts, the Field Museum did not want to invite a flood of demands from around the world for other items.

"We couldn't say yes (to the Maori) in a way that we could never say no again to anyone else," Terrell said. "We didn't want to give away the farm. We still rather like being a museum."

In the end, The Field Museum deemed the Maori items a special case. Staff also were swayed, Terrell said, by the desire of New Zealand's national museum, the Museum of New Zealand Te Papa Tongarewa, to maintain a close working relationship with the Chicago museum.

Several other American museums still have Maori bones and heads, including the American Museum of Natural History, which has some 35 severed Maori heads.

Hakiwai said there have been talks with the New York-based museum about giving up its head collection — considered one of the largest in the world — but he did not know the status of the negotiations. Museum spokesmen declined to discuss the collection this week.

At Monday's event in Wellington, Hakiwai said more Maori prayers will be said and traditional songs will be sung in honor of the repatriated remains; colorful ceremonial cloaks will be draped across the crates containing the remains as Maori tribal leaders and other dignitaries look on.

"And there will be lamenting for these ancestors who have been away form New Zealand for so long," Hakiwai said.

Terrell said he expected to be among the teary-eyed participants.

"You can't do this kind of thing and not end up being moved," he said.


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Send comments or questions to:
Ken_Conklin@yahoo.com

LINKS

The present webpage compiles information for 2007. When 2007 ends, another webpage picks up the coverage for 2008 at
http://www.angelfire.com/planet/big60/nagprahawaii2008.html

The Forbes cave controversy up until the NAGPRA Review Committee hearing in St. Paul, Minnesota, May 9-11, 2003 was originally described and documented at:
http://www.angelfire.com/hi2/hawaiiansovereignty/nagpraforbes.html

The conflict among Bishop Museum, Hui Malama, and several competing groups of claimants became so complex and contentious that the controversy was the primary focus of the semiannual national meeting of the NAGPRA Review Committee meeting in St. Paul, Minnesota May 9-11, 2003. A webpage was created to cover that meeting and followup events related to it. But the Forbes Cave controversy became increasingly complex and contentious, leading to public awareness of other related issues. By the end of 2004, the webpage focusing on the NAGPRA Review Committee meeting and its aftermath had become exceedingly large, at more than 250 pages with an index of 22 topics at the top. See:
http://www.angelfire.com/hi2/hawaiiansovereignty/nagpraforbesafterreview.html

This present webpage covers only the year 2007.

For coverage of events in 2005 (about 250 pages), see:

http://www.angelfire.com/hi2/hawaiiansovereignty/nagprahawaii2005.html

For year 2006 (about 150 pages), see:
http://www.angelfire.com/hi2/hawaiiansovereignty/nagprahawaii2006.html

The present webpage compiles information for 2007. When 2007 ends, another webpage picks up the coverage for 2008 at
http://www.angelfire.com/planet/big60/nagprahawaii2008.html

GO BACK TO: the homepage for NAGPRA (Native American Graves Protection and Repatriation Act) as applied to Hawai'i -- Mokapu, Honokahua, Bishop Museum Ka'ai; Providence Museum Spear Rest; Forbes Cave Artifacts; the Hui Malama organization

OR

GO BACK TO OTHER TOPICS ON THIS WEBSITE